Macau gaming law will allow junkets to serve one casino operator

The bill proposing new gaming regulations will go to a vote at Macau's Legislative Council.
The bill proposing new gaming regulations will go to a vote at Macau's Legislative Council.

Macau’s new gaming law aims to increase oversight of junket operations in the city.

Macau.- New details have emerged on the proposed amendments to Macau’s gaming regulatory framework. Authorities have revealed that the new gaming bill will allow junket operators to each provide services to only one casino operator.

André Cheong Weng Chon, Executive Council spokesperson, said the bill would also ban junkets from engaging in revenue-sharing arrangements with casino operators and from operating certain areas or facilities in casino venues. The bill would also prohibit junkets from turning to third parties to conduct their business, except in “situations deemed necessary by their partners, members of the management body or employees.”

Another measure would require gaming operators to submit details of commissions paid to junkets for the previous month by the 10th day of each month.

Casino operators will need permission to operate in other jurisdictions

It’s also emerged that Macau casino operators will have to seek permission from the Macau SAR’s chief executive for permission to operate in other jurisdictions. Five of the current casino operators are listed in Hong Kong, while Melco Resorts & Entertainment is listed on the Nasdaq.

The bill states that the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau (DICJ) must be notified if gaming authorities in another jurisdiction conduct any investigation into any gambling activities conducted by those establishments, or if the jurisdiction offers any gambling concessions.

According to Macau Business, if the controlling shareholder of the local gaming concessionaire is also a licensed gaming operator in any other jurisdiction, and authorities in that region decide that it can no longer be a shareholder of the Macau licensee, a transfer can only be made if it is proven that there was no fault of the local concessionaire or its outside controlling shareholder.

According to local media reports, there would be up to six concessions under the new government-backed bill and the current sub-concession system would be brought to an end. The concession period would be for a maximum of 10 years but could be extended for a further three years in exceptional circumstances.

The bill will be submitted to the City Legislative Council, whose members will vote on it. How long the process takes is up to the city’s lawmakers, who can also propose changes to the bill.

In this article: