Macau to limit numbers of gaming tables, machines for casino operators

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HONG KONG — Macau has fixed a limit of 6,000 gaming tables and 12,000 gaming machines for new casino operators early next year, as well as minimum income levels for each operator, the government in the world’s biggest gambling hub said on Friday.

With their contracts set to expire at the end of the year, the territory’s six licensed operators, Sands China, Wynn Macau, Galaxy Entertainment, MGM China , SJM Holdings, Melco Resorts have to rebid for their spots.

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The government kicked off the highly anticipated bidding process in July, when it said global gaming operators could submit bids for new licenses from July 29 until September 14.

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“The new gaming operation from early next year will … cap the total amount of all gaming tables and gaming machines to ensure orderly and healthy development,” the government said in a statement on its website.

Minimum annual gross income from each gaming table is set at 7 million patacas ($866,122) while the figure for each gaming machine is 300,000 patacas, the government said.

A casino operator which falls short of the lower income level must make it up by paying a special premium. The government said the rules aimed to spur licensed companies to make good use of approved tables and machines.

By the end of 2021, Macau had a total of 6,198 gaming tables operating and 11,758 machines. That was down from a high of 6,739 tables in 2019, prior to the COVID-19 outbreak. ($1=8.0820 patacas) (Reporting by Farah Master and Twinnie Siu; Editing by Raissa Kasolowsky)

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