Macau’s gaming revenue will be similar in 2022 to that of 2021, while a daily average of 20,000 visitors would be restored in May, according to former legislator and Director of the Institute for the Study of Commercial Gaming at the University of Macau, Davis Fong Ka Chio.
Fong was speaking with Inside Asian Gaming at Grand Lisboa Palace on Wednesday where the Macau Social Welfare Bureau, the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau (DICJ) and the Institute for the Study of Commercial Gaming at the University of Macau held a launch ceremony for the Responsible Gaming Information Station.
He noted that in 2019, before the COVID-19 pandemic, there were around 110,000 tourists per day and average daily gambling revenue was MOP$800 million (US$100 million). In the first quarter of this year, the average daily number of tourists was 20,000 and daily gambling revenue was around MOP$200 million (US$25 million). He believes that the number of tourists in Macau is gradually returning to that Q1 level after plummeting in March due to COVID outbreaks in neighboring Guangdong Province.
While the outbreaks have affected tourists’ confidence in traveling to Macau, Fong pointed out that if there is an outbreak in the neighboring areas, it takes two-and-a-half to three months to restore the number of visitors to normal, and it has now been two months since the Guangdong outbreaks.
Pointing to the average tourist spend of about CNY10,000 in 2020 and 2021, Fong also suggested this year’s gambling revenue could be predicted based on expected visitor arrivals – estimating it will be similar to last year’s when GGR totalled MOP$86.86 billion (US$10.82 billion).
On the issue of the recently announced closure of some satellite casinos, the former legislator said the decision to close was primarily because of the pandemic given that amendments to Macau’s gaming law impacting the future of satellites have not yet been passed.
It was revealed during Wednesday’s launch ceremony that there are currently 59 responsible gaming kiosks and information stations in Macau, 35 of which are located in casinos, and that since the kiosks were set up in 2012, more than 110,000 people have accessed them.