Bernstein Expects Macau’s Slow Recovery as Restrictions Continue to Drop

Macau Government Confirms Stricter Rules for the Casino Gambling Sector

Bernstein Expects Macau’s Slow Recovery as Restrictions Continue to Drop

In Summary:

Bernstein has issued a cautiously optimistic analysis about growing gross gaming revenue in MacauTraveling from Guangdong province is important for Macau’s financial performance, but tourism and gambling have not picked upBernstein though does not expect travel from Guangdong to stop any time soon because the COVID-19 situation there is low risk

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Macau’s Novel Coronavirus Response and Coordination Center continue to ease up restrictions for travelers from Guangdong province, which will pave the special administrative region’s recovery in the following months. This is the conclusion brokerage firm Bernstein has reached after analyzing the region’s economy.

Easing up of Traveling Restrictions Benefits Macau

Macau has been fairly closed-off from the rest of the world for almost two years now, with travelers allowed to return intermittently, but now tourists and gamblers from the mainland are bound to help with the recovery of the SAR’s gross gaming revenue.

Bernstein expects that GGR will pick up in May as anyone who wishes to enter Macau from Guangdong will need to just show a negative COVID-19 test that has been taken 48 to 72 hours before. Much of this is in line with how the rest of the world regulates people flow in their own countries.

There have already been positive signs of development with weekly gross gaming revenue growing 11% week-on-week, say Bernstein analysts. The present numbers reported by the brokerage amount to $10.3 million in the period between April 19 to April 24. Big hopes were pegged on the May Labor Day holiday weekend but so far, turnup has been lackluster at best.

However, the long-term prospects for Macau’s recovery seem better as the SAR will continue to receive a healthy inflow of tourists as Guangdong is currently on China’s list of low-risk provinces in the country. This means that it’s unlikely for the traveling between Macau and SAR to be stopped completely, as a return of heavy COVID-19 infections is not expected immediately.

Still a Long Way Off to Full Recovery

More relaxation of traveling measures is indicative of a sustained trend that will allow Macau to recover. Meanwhile, the SAR is overhauling its casino laws in the hopes of bringing in more transparency and creating an economy that is not liable to the shock waves in the gambling industry, as exemplified by the COVID-19 pandemic. Bernstein’s outlook for the months ahead is positive, but Macau is still going to need some time to catch up to pre-pandemic levels in its tourism and gambling industries.

Author: Ian Douglas