THE M3: CHOW:S'PORE MONTHLY TABLE REVS; LIGHT RAILWAY; JAPAN CASINO DRAFT; PAGCOR OFFER; AND MORE

The Macau Metro Monitor, August 9th, 2010

CHOW: MACAU MUST DEVELOP UNIQUE TOURISM Macau Daily News

According to Chow Kam Fai, a member of the Legislative Assembly of Macau and CEO of Fisherman's Wharf, the two casinos in Singapore have a total of 800 gambling tables and monthly table revenues have already reached MOP 6 billion, compared with Macau's 4,800 gaming tables and monthly tables revenues of MOP 16 billion.  Chow concluded that Singapore's revenue per gaming table is several times higher than that of Macau's; thus, Macau should develop a unique, multi-cultural tourism strategy to attract more tourists, he added.  Chow believes Macau should not necessarily copy the model of Las Vegas.

Meanwhile, the plan for Fisherman’s Wharf to go public has failed.  Chow emphasized that Fisherman’s Wharf has various ways to obtain financing, and the company does not necessarily need to go public.  Fisherman’s Wharf is owned by Stanley Ho, Chow Kam-fai, and Lin Fenghe.

WORK ON MACAU LIGHT RAILWAY TO START AT BEGINNING OF 2011 Macauhub

Construction of Macau’s light railway is scheduled for early 2011.  Completion of the first phase of the project would be in 2014.  According to MacauNews news agency, the first phase of the light railway will be 21 km long and have 21 stations, making it possible to carry 14,200 people per hour in each direction between Macau and Taipa island.

JAPANESE LAWMAKERS RELEASED THEIR PROPOSED DRAFT OF CASINO ACT Yogonet

Drafted by representative Koga, chairman of The General Assembly of International Sightseeing Industry Development Diet Member Association, and Mihara, the advisor of the Assembly, the Casino Act consists of 68 articles and will be discussed at the normal assembly of Diet in 2011.  The Act states the expectation of two casino sites and up to 10 sites based on the performance of the first two sites.  The local government would draft site proposals and the operation of each facility would be executed by private entities which shall be licensed by the Casino Administration Organization to be established under the Cabinet Office.

AQUINO PONDERS US$10B CASINO OFFER Channel News Asia, AFP

Ramon Ang, vice chairman of food and beverage giant San Miguel, made a US$10 billion offer to Philippine President Benigno Aquino to take over Pagcor, the government's monopoly casino franchise.  According to Inquirer,  Ang says he intends to go into partnership with Malaysian magnates Robert Kuok, Ananda Krishnan and Francis Yeoh.

A spokesman for Pagcor, Jay Santiago, said privatization would not occur anytime soon.  "It is not as simple as it sounds. Eventually, there will be privatisation, but that is too far off," Santiago told AFP.  "(But) we agree that 10 billion dollars is a good benchmark. If and when we do go through that process, at least we know we will not be getting anything below 10 billion dollars."

SINGAPORE TO WATCH INFLOW OF FOREIGNERS WSJ.com

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said, "I understand Singaporeans' concerns about taking in so many foreign workers and immigrants…We will control the inflow, to ensure that it is not too fast, and not too large... We must make up for the shortage of Singaporean workers in our economy and the shortfall of babies in our population."  Loong reiterated that the economy will moderate in the 2nd half of 2010.  "Let us not get carried away. Risks remain in the world economy, especially in Europe and the U.S. The global financial system is not fully mended. Singapore is small and open. If the world economy turns bad, we will be buffeted," the prime minister said.

LOVEMAN TALKS ABOUT MACAU MISTAKE macaubusiness.com, Bloomberg

By being too fixated on numbers, Harrah's Gary Loveman, missed the opportunity in Macau.  But he still believes he can get back in action.  “There are two scarce resources in Macau,” he says, “land and gaming licenses. If you wish to have a resort in Macau, you need to have access to those two things. We have one of them [Caesars Golf Macau golf course, in Cotai].”


GUANGZHOU-ZHUHAI INTERCITY RAIL WILL START RUNNING BY END OF OCTOBER Macau Daily News

The intercity rail transit line start running by the end of October and officially effective by the end of this year.  However, some engineering problems in Zhuhai city have delayed construction progress.  It is uncertain when that construction will be completed.