Beijing tells Macau that its Non-Diversification affects the “Whole Nation”

posted in news

November saw Macau’s casino revenue fall by 19.3% after they netted $3.04 billion – the lowest amount in two years. And this is the latest down month for the former Portuguese colony, following a year in 2013 where they earned $45.52 billion.

China would rather not see their special administrative region continue this slide, which is why they recently issued a stern warning through Basic Law Committee Chairman Li Fei.

In charge of Macau and Hong Kong affairs, Fei explained to Macau why Beijing wants them to immediately diversify into other forms of non-gaming entertainment, such as dining, nightclubs and shopping. Here’s a look at Li’s statement, according to South China Morning Post:

“The overwhelming dominance of gambling in Macau is not in line with the overall interest of Macau and the fact that Macau’s economy, especially gaming, is closely connected with the mainland determines that when one judges the overall interest of Macau, one cannot focus only on Macau’s economic growth and tax revenue.

One must take into account the socioeconomic safety, stability and developmental interest of the mainland and the whole nation.

The nation and the mainland provide Macau with many opportunities. If the SAR can grab and fully utilise these conditions, with good planning, scientific policymaking and effective implementation, it is possible to explore a fresh development path of cooperation with the mainland in the nation’s overall development framework.”

Macau’s Executive Director, Dr. Fernando Chui Sai-on, has already heeded Lei’s words. He overhauled the territory’s government and is working on the diversification matter already. President Xi Jinping is due in Macau later this montn, and he’ll no doubt be interested in Sai-on’s progress.

However, it’s worth mentioning that the problems go beyond just offering more restaurants and family-oriented entertainment. China is currently in the midst of a crackdown on Macau to prevent human trafficking, prostitution and organized crime. The problem is that many mainland Chinese criminals are using Macau as a money laundering hub because they can easily move funds in the area.

The Chinese government has recently taken a hardline stance against these activities, dealing a blow to the junket companies that have brought so many high rollers to the casinos. So simple diversification alone won’t solve the problem as long as this government crackdown continues.

Comments are closed.