ASF Consortium still looking for partners

ASF Consortium is still yet to secure major partners for its $3 billion integrated resort development planned for The Spit in Queensland, Gold Coast Bulletin reports.

The consortium said it was still searching for a “tier one” casino operator and “at least one other cornerstone entity”, despite a detailed submission for the project due to go the State Government in July.

Last April, it was revealed that Australia-listed Crown Resorts was in secret negotiations with the consortium to build and operate five-story waterfront casino. ASF sought expressions of interest to operate the proposed casino after concerns from the Queensland government of heavy ­Chinese involvement in the bid. But no deal has been signed.

Consortium member, ASF Group is also facing questions of its financial viability after it saw losses of $6 million in the six months ended Dec. 31, leaving only $5.1 million in cash remaining.

However, ASF Group director Louis Chien said the ASF Consortium had “more than sufficient” financial ability to deliver what would be the city’s biggest project.

“The Queensland Government would not have progressed ASF’s proposal if it did not understand the capacity and capability of the consortium to deliver the project.”

The Chinese-backed consortium was initially made up of China State Construction Engineering Company (CSCEC) and CCCC Guangzhou Dredging Co Ltd., however, it is understood the latter company is no longer involved.

“It is expected that the consortium members will include ASF Group, China State Construction Engineering Company, a Tier 1 casino operator and at least one other cornerstone entity,” said the consortium.

The proposed casino would compete with Jupiters Hotel and Casino, owned by Star Entertainment.