MACAU TO SET NEW TOURISM TAX
The Macau Government Tourism Office proposed a new tourism tax and conducted a study which shows popular support for it.
Macau.- Macau gets most of its tax revenue from the gaming industry and wants to take a little more. The Macau Government Tourism Office (MGTO) had suggested a new tourism tax and had to review it.
The office conducted a feasibility study to consider that possibility and had an overwhelming result. After 149k questionnaires to residents and members of the tourism industry, 95% of residents supported it and 80% of the segment rejected it.
Therefore, Macau would set the new tourism tax at €11-22.5 per head and would have just a slight impact on visitor flows.
Most analysts have already predicted a slow start for the industry, but not everything is lost. According to brokerage Sanford C Bernstein, the Macau casino segment will have an improved 2020.
The firm says GGR may grow by 8%, thanks to 6% and 9% growths in the VIP and mass segments.
“We forecast GGR growth of 8% year-on-year in 2020,” noted Sanford Bernstein analysts Vitaly Umansky, Kelsey Zhu and Eunice Lee.
“Concerns over the Chinese economy will moderate and liquidity issues will ease along with a potentially stronger RMB over the next six to 12 months. That should lead to a rebound in the VIP segment,” they said on the Macau casino segment potential.