Pacific Islands

Chengdu Century City New International Convention and Exhibition Centre Co Ltd has had its casino license withdrawn by Samoa’s Gambling Control Authority (GCA). According to local media reports, the decision was based on allegations against the company’s chairman, which ETG said it could not confirm when these would be resolved. This, in turn, affects Samoa’s GCA issuance of a license. The agency says it will consider whether to issue a second casino license in the coming months.

Edward Natapei, Vanuatu's deputy prime minister, said he expects Vanuatu Trade Development Pvt. Ltd., a Singaporean company which contracted last month with the government for $350 million in airport developments, will also open a casino resort in the country to take advantage of an expected rise in tourist traffic.


Southern Ruby Ltd., a company in which Macau’s Ng Man-sun holds a 73.45 percent interest, has signed a memorandum of understanding to acquire the Grand Hotel and Casino in Port Vila, Vanuatu from Australia's Zagame Corp. The deal was announced by Amax Holdings Ltd., which last month announced a preliminary deal to buy a 51 percent stake in Southern Ruby from Ng, Amax's chairman and chief executive. Amax said Southern Ruby is seeking to obtain a gaming license to operate the Grand Casino. Talks with Zagame are to conclude by September 30 pending further extension.


Benjamin Cruz, vice speaker of the Guam legislature, asked the island's attorney general to review his draft bill to prohibit casino cafes as Guam Sweepstakes Corp., a subsidiary of PhilWeb Corp. prepares to open a second location. The cafes give customers the chance to play games such as blackjack and keno to acquire points that can be converted into sweepstakes entries, which Cruz argued represents illegal gambling.



Tinian mayor Ramon De La Cruz told Radio Australia a casino taskforce is looking into gaming law changes to make the island "a more competitive gaming jurisdiction". He added that investors looking at buying the troubled Tinian Dynasty Hotel and Casino, including an unnamed Hong Kong-listed company and Taiwan's Howarm Construction Co., have been in talks with the Internal Revenue Service over alleged violations by the casino.