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Imperial Pacific gaming license decision delayed to April 22nd


After lengthy discussions, the Commonwealth Casino Commission (CCC) has set April 22nd as the final deadline to reach a settlement agreement with Imperial Pacific International (IPI) regarding its gaming license.

The debacle continued on Wednesday, as the CCC and the Office of the Attorney General were unable to reach a settlement agreement with IPI after a four-hour discussion.

IPI owes some $62 million it allegedly owes in casino license fees to the Commonwealth of Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI), relating to almost four years of its annual casino license fees.

The CCC commissioners postponed deliberations on whether to revoke IPI’s exclusive casino license, with Executive Director Andrew Yeom stating that no settlement could be reached, prompting the commissioners to enter an executive session to discuss legal matters.

Afterward, they recessed until the following day to seek further guidance from legal counsel, indicating the possibility of resuming deliberations.

During the meeting, Yeom emphasized the importance of reaching a settlement to benefit the CNMI economy and the gaming industry. However, despite extensive discussions, legal complexities surrounding IPI’s debt position hindered progress.

According to Kuam News, after the settlement delay was agreed, with Yeom expressing hope that this would be the last deadline, indicating that if the agreement is not signed by the Attorney General, the commission will proceed with revoking IPI’s exclusive gaming license.

The commission, leaning towards a settlement rather than immediate license revocation, approved the extension. However, last-minute negotiations revealed that the Attorney General’s office deemed the draft settlement legally insufficient.

The decision day on April 22nd will determine the fate of IPI’s gaming license, although uncertainties remain regarding the outcome of the negotiations.

Nelson Moura
Nelson Moura
Editor and reporter with 10 years of experience in Greater China, namely Taiwan and Macau, in printed and online media, with a focus on finance, gaming, politics, crime, business and social issues.