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The Macau Metro Monitor.  January 6th, 2010


MACAU TO INJECT ANOTHER 126.4 MILLION PATACAS INTO TOURISM INDUSTRY chinaknowledge.com

The government of Macau recently announced that it plans to invest a further MOP 126.4 million in the tourism industry by the end of March, under policies that were to expire at the end of 2009.  From August to December 2009, the city invested approximately MOP 28.6 million in guide services and business tourism events.  The New Year’s Day holiday, lasting from January 1st through January 3rd, saw 279,000 tourists travel to Macau, 3.71% more than in the same period of 2009. 

SINGAPORE SETS THE BAR HIGH FOR CASINOS scmp.com

Recently published regulations on VIP gaming in Singapore impose strict measures on high-rollers and gambling junket organizers alike.  VIP gamblers will need to provide their name, home address, ID or passport number, and other details.  Junket organizers and agents must submit detailed financial disclosures, pay for background checks to be completed, and submit to finger and palm printing, among other requirements. 

While not unexpected, the rules are indicative of the regulatory environment awaiting LVS, Genting Group, and any other prospective player in the Singapore gaming market.  Despite this, the effective tax rate on VIP gaming revenue of 12% (compared to 39% in Macau) should help Singapore to be competitive in the Asian VIP market.  Casinos in Singapore will be free to pay out higher rebates to the VIP players who visit, as well as higher commissions to junket organizers who hurdle the requirements of the authorities.