Govt looks to amend terms for concession renewal

The Macau government is looking at the possibility of amending the terms and conditions relating to the refreshment of gaming rights for Macau’s current gaming concessions and sub-concessions.

SJM's and MGM's concessions are set to expire in 2020, while Wynn's, Galaxy's, Melco's and Sands' licenses are set to expire in 2022.

According to a government press statement, the Secretary for Economy and Finance, Leong Vai Tac on Monday said while they can be extended exceptionally by Macau’s chief executive to a maximum of five extra years, a new concession process must take place after that.

However, there is no yet formal public process for the concession review. Analysts believe there will be “no free pass” when it comes to renewal, instead that there will be some form of bidding process.

“The government will most certainly run some form of an RFP process with criteria that will make existing concessionaires the evident winners of new concessions (effectively renewals), but likely under new terms, with a potential for economic costs,” said Bernstein in a note on Tuesday.

“We see a very low likelihood of an existing operator failing to have its concession renewed,” it added.

Union Gaming analysts said the government is likely keeping renewals out of the picture to keep Macau’s concessionaires moving towards the overarching goal of diversification.

The brokerage also said they would not be too surprised if a 7th licensee was introduced.

Leong on Monday said the Government will pay particular heed to opinions based on the “Interim Review of Gaming Liberalization for Games of Fortune” when it came to refreshment of gaming rights.

The government would also compare Macau’s gaming industry development with that in other cities, so as to further non-gaming and the diversification of the sector, said Leong.

(Photo from Macau Government Information Bureau)

More news from this jurisdiction

MacauThursday, Mar 22, 2018

Melco Resorts & Entertainment said its board has approved a $500 million share repurchase program.

MacauThursday, Mar 22, 2018

The Macau Horse Racing Company has been given three years to pay its back taxes and if it fails its license will be revoked, Secretary for Economy and Finance, Lionel Leong Vai Tac said.

Macau, MalaysiaThursday, Mar 22, 2018

Steve Wynn’s announcement he is selling some, or all, of the 12 percent stake in the company he founded may open the door for Malaysia’s Genting to enter the Macau market, Bloomberg argues in an analysis.

MacauThursday, Mar 22, 2018

At least two casinos in Macau have applied to build smoking lounges in their casinos, said the Health Bureau on Wednesday, local media reports.

MacauWednesday, Mar 21, 2018

Macau gaming machine distributor Asia Pioneer Entertainment said revenue jumped by 63.7 percent in 2017, though net profit fell due to the expenses associated with the group’s recent stock exchange listing.

MacauTuesday, Mar 20, 2018

China’s VIPs have an ever growing number of IRs to choose from, but Macau is unlikely to be knocked from its post as the top draw for high rollers any time soon, analysts say.

MacauMonday, Mar 19, 2018

Melco Resorts & Entertainment CEO Lawrence Ho said the company will take care of the family of a worker who died at the construction site of its Morpheus hotel on Sunday.