Macau casino suppliers relocate to Phillipines and Singapore: Report

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Suppliers of slot machines, baccarat table systems and other casino equipment are moving out of Macau citing business uncertainty, reported Bloomberg.

Macau is under pressure even before the pandemic struck, with Chinese President Xi Jinping regime intending to move the enclave away from gambling relied economy. The zero Covid policy followed by the expiry of twenty year concessionaire of casinos led to uncertainty in the industry. Existing casino operators may not make new investments until new tenders are finalized.

With their contracts set to expire at the end of 2022, all six original licensed operators Sands China, Wynn Macau, Galaxy Entertainment, MGM China, SJM Holdings, and Melco Resorts, will need to rebid for their spots.

The new gaming law announced a cap of 12,000 gaming machines from 2023 while 2019 already had 17,000 machines.

With demand in Macau on decline due to the above factors, Light & Wonder Inc., a leading provider of products used in casinos, is relocating its expatriate staff to the Philippines, which has become its top market in Asia and where it is opening a new office. Another equipment maker from Japan is also shifting employees to the Philippines and Singapore, reported Bloomberg.

G2E Asia, one of the world’s biggest gaming conferences, was held outside of Macau last month for the first time since the annual event started in 2007.

The new law will give Macau officials the power to punish casino operators for everything from under-performing revenue to threatening national security. Gaming taxes have been raised marginally from 39% to 40%, while the new licenses will be given out for up to 10 years, down from the current 20 years.

The overhaul comes as the Chinese government pushes the city to reduce its reliance on gaming revenue and diversify into industries including Chinese medicine, events and tourism, technology and finance.