5,400 out of the 6,739 gaming tables in Macau are now open following last month’s 15 day casino shut down.

Macau.- More than 5,400 gaming tables have no re-opened at Macau casinos following the forced 15-day casino closure last month and subsequent grace period given to operators to resume operators.

The number of open tables is around 80% of the 6,739 tables available across all of the city’s casinos.

The Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau (DICJ) has asked casinos to restrict the number if available tables to allow for social distancing during the Coronavirus crisis.

Following the grace period, just two casinos still remain closed; the Casino Taipa, at the Regency Art Hotel in Taipa and Casino Macau Jockey Club, also in Taipa.

Casino Taipa reopened after the 15-day closure period but is now closed again because the Regency Art Hotel has been designated as a quarantine venue for visitors arriving in Macau.

Casino Macau Jockey Club is staying closed because its management wants to undertake renovations.

The casino is licensed as a satellite property under the Macau gaming rights of SJM Holdings Ltd, and was allowed by the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau to keep its doors closed despite the regulator mandating that all casinos reopen by the end of this week.

Macau halves 2020 forecast

The government now expects GGR to reach MOP130 billion (€14.8 billion) for the full year.

Macau.- The Macau government has halved its forecast for casino gross gaming revenue for FY20 due to the impact of Coronavirus.

The government now expects GGR to reach MOP130 billion (€14.8 billion), down from the forecast of MOP260 billion (€29.6 billion) announced in November.

The new forecast included a revised 2020 budget plan. It was published by local authorities yesterday but still needs to be approved by the city’s Legislative Assembly.

The government is usually conservative in its annual forecasts on casino GGR, typically underestimating the value by a significant margin.

Based on the government’s revised forecast, annual GGR tally for 2020 would be down 55.5 per cent, compared to the MOP292.46 billion achieved last year. In comparison, the 2019 total was down 3.4 per cent from the prior year.

As a result of the measures taken to contain the spread of coronavirus, including the closure of casinos for more than two weeks, Macau casinos recorded MOP3.1 billion (€353million) in GGR for February.

The figure was down 87.8 per cent from previous year. Last month’s result puts the market’s accumulated 2020 year-on-year decline at 49.9 percent, to MOP25.23 billion (€2.8 billion).

The government also revealed it expects to collect lower tax revenue from the city’s gaming industry.

Such taxes usually account for more than 80 percent of the government’s revenue each year. As a result, the government admitted it now expects a MOP38.95 billion (€4.3 billion) deficit for FY20, and that it expects to use its “extraordinary” financial reserves to cover the shortfall.

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