IPI acting CEO accepts end of casino exclusivity on Saipan

The CCC's hearing on IPI's casino licence has been postponed to May 24.
The CCC's hearing on IPI's casino licence has been postponed to May 24.

Tao Xing, IPI’s acting chief executive, has told the Commonwealth Casino Commission he’s open to the idea of allowing another casino operator on Saipan.

Northern Mariana Islands.- During a meeting with members of the Commonwealth Casino Commission (CCC), Tao Xing, the acting chief executive officer of Imperial Pacific International, said that he agreed with the idea of terminating IPI’s licence exclusivity and allowing another casino on Saipan.

The comments may seem unexpected, but Tao Xing said that removing the exclusivity of the casino licence was part of the negotiation between the CNMI government and IPI, whose licence is currently suspended due to non-payment of regulatory fees.

A hearing to define whether Imperial Pacific International’s casino licence will be permanently revoked has been postponed until May 24. Currently, Saipan has only one exclusive casino licence, but in October Ralph N. Yumul, house floor leader, introduced a bill that would allow five casino licences.

At the time, Yumul said that if there were five casino licences each with an annual fee of US$5m, it would result in a total of US$25m, more than what IPI is supposed to pay.

In March, Andrew Yeom, CCC’s executive director, said two New Jersey investors were interested in operating an offline and online casino in Saipan

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