The completion of two government-commissioned studies on the possible development of Macau’s gaming sector in the period between 2020 and 2030 is delayed, confirmed the city’s Economic Bureau in response to enquiries from GGRAsia. The bureau previously said the reports were due to be completed within the third quarter of 2018.
A policy research unit of the Macau government’s Economic Development Council had in December 2017 commissioned two studies that respectively considered the issue of what was termed “moderate scale” in relation to development of the city’s gaming industry.
The two studies were commissioned from, respectively, the University of Macau, and Macau University of Science and Technology. The former’s study is titled: “Quantitative Analysis on Exploring the Moderate Scale of the Gaming Industry (2020-2030) from Macao’s Social and Economic Aspects”. The latter’s study is called: “Quantitative Analysis on Exploring the Moderate Scale of the Gaming Industry (2020-2030) from the Perspectives of the Industry’s Healthy Development and of Regional Competition”.
An Economic Bureau representative stated in an email reply in Chinese to GGRAsia concerning the timing for release of the reports: “The increasingly uncertain economic factors worldwide seen so far this year  – especially starting from the second half of the year – bring varying degrees of impact to different countries and the regional economy and their respective prospects.”
It added: “As such, in order to enhance the quality and reference value of the studies, the researchers are adjusting and improving the content of their reports.”
The Economic Bureau did not provide any update on any new timetable for completion and release to the public of the two documents. The bureau had noted previously to GGRAsia that the aim of the two studies was “to propose scientifically-sound and justifiable recommendations to the SAR [Special Administrative Region] Government on moderate economic diversification policy”.
A key element of public policy regarding gaming in the next few years is what will happen when the six current casino licences expire on dates either in 2020 or 2022. Macau’s Chief Executive, Fernando Chui Sai On, provided no guidance on the matter in the local government’s Policy Address for 2019, which took place in November.
A recent note issued by Morgan Stanley suggested that questions concerning the refreshment of Macau’s gaming licences would not be resolved in 2019.
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