Macau’s gambling companies have vowed between $2.5 and $3.8 million for the sum total of $25 million to help with medical supplies and the relief efforts in the spread of the coronavirus.
Coronavirus Threat Continues to Spread Prompting Casinos to Donate
With the Macau gaming industry taking a hit last week when the administrative region’s government imposed a two-week ban on all casino facilities, part of a broader lock-down, local operators are stepping up their efforts to help tackle the deadly coronavirus that has already claimed over 1,000 lives and infected a number exceeding 42,500 people.
In a bid to help fight the virus, six casino operators and junket companies have vowed a collective $25 million to help researchers expedite finding a cure for the disease, news outlets in the region reported.
Galaxy Entertainment Group Ltd. Has donated an estimated $2.5 million to help fight the virus through its charity arm, the Galaxy Entertainment Group Foundation. Meanwhile, Lawrence Ho’s company, Melco Resorts & Entertainment, contributed $2.6 million towards the efforts to contain the spreading of the virus.
The company said that the money was allocated to purchase the necessary medical supplies and provide the community with better protection.
MGM China Holdings has contributed another $2.5 million joined by Las Vegas Sands which met the amount. Money was forwarded with different pretexts – some companies were focusing on research whereas others wanted to help the government implement all measures without supporting extra costs.
Wynn Macau and SJM Holdings both threw in around $2.5 million. Local junket manufacturers have been slightly more generous with Suncity Group contributing $3.8 million. It also contributed 100,000 face masks, which has been running in thin supply since the coronavirus’ spread has been inexorable despite the measures by the mainland to contaminate the threat.
Containing the Crisis
Chinese President Xi Jinping has made his first public appearance in Wuhan amid sacking the local governor for the inability to deal with the crisis. Meanwhile, a cruise ship continues to be stuck off the Japanese shores with the number of infections on board going up.
Macau already has 10 reported cases of the coronavirus and these numbers may only increase, despite the administrative region being on a lockdown with only a skeletal public service network operational.
Furthermore, the estimated losses to the casino industry – one of the main staples of the local economy – amount to $100 million a day. Macau has already been buffeted by a modest 2019 with results falling nearly 4%.
The coronavirus outbreak is even more threatening to the economy and gambling, but far more importantly, authorities are actively trying to limit its spread.