The former Portuguese enclave Macau is home to many of the world’s most iconic land-based casino venues such as the Venetian Macau venue, The Plaza Macao, Casino Babylon Macau, and more. Due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic which has directly caused many financial and social disruptions across the globe, the Macau casino industry has seen rather disappointing gross gaming revenues not only in May but also in March and April.
Travel restrictions that were implemented by the Chinese government to combat the spread of the highly-contagious coronavirus were largely to blame for disappointing gross gaming revenues of Macau casinos. As revealed by several local news outlets, Macau casinos recorded a massive 93.2% decrease in its net gross gaming revenues that hit only $220.9 million for the month of May.
According to reports released by Inside Asian Gaming and GGRAsia, official figures from the former Portuguese enclave’s gaming entity the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau show that aggregated gross gaming revenues for May represent the second consecutive month in that Macau casinos had chalked up a comparable diminution of over 90%. Back in April, Macau casinos had chalked up a decline of 96.8% in gross gaming revenues which hit only $94 million.
Growing Daily Deficits
According to the same local sources, the most recent figure on the industry’s gross gaming revenues of Macau casinos showed that those thirty-nine casinos in the area have logged gross gaming revenues worth around $4.1 billion since the beginning of 2020. These rather disappointing figures represent a massive drop of 73.7% when compared to the industry’s aggregated gross gaming revenues of the same five-month period last year when the thirty-nine Macau casinos made around $15.7 billion.
What makes things even worse for the Macau casino gambling industry and its thirty-nine casinos active in the region is the industry’s growing daily deficits. According to Sanford C Bernstein Limited which is a prominent brokerage company, the industry’s comparable daily net gross gaming revenues for the month of May fell into another negative territory especially from the 18th of May due to diminishing player bases and hold volatilities. The same brokerage institution also proclaimed that the most likely one-month-long median of around $7.1 million was around 126% lower when compared to those month-long medians of March and April.
Other Troubles for Casino Owners
The casino industry in Macau is also facing many other troubles that could not be avoided. As previously mentioned, the former Portuguese enclave is home to some of the most iconic casinos in the world such as the Casino Grand Lisboa venue. The city is also home to over 632,000 citizens. It has recorded its very first official infection with coronavirus back on the 22nd of January.
With growing numbers of daily coronavirus infections, the government was forced to temporarily shutter all of those thirty-nine Macau casinos and the decision was made on the 4th of February. Even though all of the thirty-nine casinos in Macau partially re-opened on the 20th of February after only forty-five coronavirus infections recorded, there are many travel restrictions still in place.
For instance, individuals who are traveling between Macau and Hong Kong or mainland China have to undergo fourteen days of quarantine. This means that the former Portuguese enclave was cut off from many of its regular gamblers who come from Hong Kong and mainland China back in March when the government decided to postpone its IVS or Individual Visit Scheme. This scheme allows tourists from forty-nine communities to come to Macau without being required to travel within a tour group.
Looking ahead, land-based casinos in Macau could easily recover from the negative consequences of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic once all travel restrictions are lifted. It was also reported that the very first department of Macau casinos to recover will most likely be its VIP Business.