THE MACAU METRO MONITOR, NOVEMBER 12, 2013
PARTNER IN LAWRENCE HO'S RUSSIAN INVESTMENT ARRESTED Macau Business
A Russian newspaper, Kommersant, reported on November 7 that Oleg Drozdov had been detained for investigation by Russian law enforcement. It’s reportedly regarding alleged malpractices by a business called OOO Vladivostokservis and relates to the construction of a solid waste treatment facility in Vladivostok in the Russian Far East. The investigation relates to events in 2009 and 2010 and is said to involve 367 million roubles (US$11.2 million, or 89.72 million patacas).
Summit Ascent - a company controlled by Lawrence Ho - said it was paying US$9.02 million for 46% of Oriental Regent Ltd, a holding company that currently owns 50% of First Gambling Company of the Far East LLC. First Gambling in turn has a gaming licence in Primorye, the Russian Far East province of which Vladivostok is the capital. Melco International Development Ltd – which also holds a stake in MPEL – would pay US$980,392 for a 5% stake in Oriental Regent.
Drozdov is an indirect minority shareholder in Oriental Regent. He controls 30% of it via Elegant City Ltd, a British Virgin Islands company that is in turn wholly owned by Mr Drozdov.
The estimated total investment for the first phase of the casino resort complex to be constructed at an ‘Integrated Entertainment Zone’ in Primorye – next door to China’s northeastern Heilongjiang province – is about US$130 million. It will have a 119-room hotel, approximately 800 slot machines, 25 VIP gaming tables and 40 mass-market gaming tables.
PUBLIC ADDRESS 2014: GOVT TO PUSH CASINOS TO PROMOTE MORE RESIDENTS TO MANAGEMENT POSITIONS Macau Business
Macau CEO Fernando Chui said the government would push large companies, including the six gaming operators, to promote more residents to management positions. He did not set any minimum ratio for Macau residents in these posts. The government will continue to “firmly” ban migrants from working as casino dealers. Chui did not clarify if the government is planning to ban non-local croupiers by law, as requested by several labour unions.
Macau SMEs will get some help in expanding to Hengqin Island, as there are plans to create an area only for Macau businesses at the new Chimelong theme park, scheduled to open next month.
The cash handout scheme will continue in 2014, handing even more money to both permanent residents and non-permanent residents. Permanent residents will receive a record MOP9,000, while non-permanent residents will get MOP5,400. Last year, permanent residents received MOP8,000 and non-permanent residents MOP4,800.