November 28, 2022 3 min read

Macau Awards Six Casino Licenses for the Next 10 Years

The long-anticipated news on the Macau gambling front is here – the Macau SAR Government has awarded the casino licenses for the next 10-year period and 6 concessionaires will be conducting gambling operations in the Chinese special administrative region.

The Same Six Concessionaires Get Casino Licenses for the Next 10 Years

The Macau SAR Government has awarded casino licenses to six gambling operators – Galaxy Entertainment Group Ltd., MGM China Holdings Ltd., Sands China Ltd., Wynn Macau Ltd., Melco Resorts & Entertainment Ltd., and SJM Holdings Ltd. So in effect, Macau authorities have renewed the licenses of all six concessionaires that have been operating in the Macau gambling market for the past 20 years.

This is great news for the six current Macau casino concessionaires as they have so far invested about $50 billion in lavish properties that they would have been forced to give up to the Macau SAR Government in case they did not receive a license. 

The bad news was only delivered to the seventh applicant in the tender, which did not receive a license. The Malaysian company GMM Ltd., which has never had a license in Macau, tried to enter the competitive market of the largest casino hub in the world by submitting a bid in the tender but did not succeed. 

What follows now is further negotiation on the final terms of the contracts in connection with the granted licenses. This process should be finished by the end of December so that licenses can be effective from January 1, 2023, when the current licenses of the six casino concessioners expire.

The Main Focus of the Tender Was Attracting Overseas Visitors

When the Macau SAR Government announced this year’s round of bids at the end of July, it specifically pointed out that it is looking for the diversification of the pool of foreign tourists that are coming to Macau.

To achieve that, Macau authorities highlighted what they will be looking for in the bids for new casino licenses.

The Macau Government stated that bids need to include detailed plans for developing and expanding non-gambling product offerings such as theme parks, concert venues, and sports stadiums.

Additionally, the Macau authorities said their main focus when evaluating the proposals will be on how and to what extent they plan to attract overseas tourists.

The Macau economy is highly dependent on tourism with the major portion of the revenue coming from Chinese gamblers traveling from mainland China. In the past few years, Chinese President Xi Jinping has been putting pressure on Macau to cut back on this dependency by developing other sectors such as retail and entertainment. Therefore, the focus of the tender for casino licenses shifted to non-gambling products.

Author

Silvia has dabbled in all sorts of writing – from content writing for social media to movie scripts. She has a Bachelor's in Screenwriting and experience in marketing and producing documentary films. With her background as a customer support agent within the gambling industry, she brings valuable insight to the Gambling News writers’ team.

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