IGamiX Managing Partner Ben Lee sat down with AGB Nippon Executive Editor Michael Penn to discuss the prospects for the oft-considered theme of the diversification of the Macau economy.
Lee explains that he has been a skeptic about the Macanese government and society’s true degree of commitment to tackle this issue effectively, and that has included its seemingly far-fetched notions of becoming a financial center sitting right next to Hong Kong.
In this podcast, however, Lee relates that he has now become a convert to the scheme’s possibilities with the realization that Macau might switch over its local economy, including its massive casinos, away from the Pataca or Hong Kong Dollar to the Digital Yuan. He sees this as an “elegant solution” for many of Macau’s economic challenges, and one that still leaves important roles for the junket industry as well.
Consolidation of the bases and advancement in adversity was the thrust of Macau Chief Executive’s policy address for 2021, though it gave little away when it came to the current pillar of the economy - the gaming industry.
Gaming suppliers, like all areas of the industry, have felt the pinch from the Covid-19 crisis, though their growing digital businesses have proved a bright spot and helped offset the impact of the crisis.
While nowhere in the world has escaped the economic fallout from the Covid-19 crisis, Macau has been hit harder than most, with forecasts for gross domestic product to shrink more than 50 percent this year.