The Macau SAR Government proposed a bill that would make concessionaires the sole entities authorized to issue gaming credits. As Inside Asian Gaming reports, the bill would prohibit casino management companies to issue such credits and any violation would impose multiple penalties, including the maximum MOP$5 million (US$615,000) fine for any breach if the bill is passed.
The bill titled Legal Regime of credit concession for Gambling in Casinos reportedly provides the legal ground to make the concessionaires the exclusive credit provider. If the bill is passed and signed into law, casino management firms would no longer be allowed to issue such credits. The legislation would prohibit casino management entities to issue gaming credits, but it would still permit licensed junkets to enter agreements with concessionaires to gain access to the credit facilities.
The credit concession bill proposes the process supervision by Macau’s gaming regulator, the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau (DICJ). As Inside Asian Gaming reports, the regulator will monitor the credit activities of the concessionaires and contracts entered by these entities and the licensed junkets for credit issuance purposes. As for the monitoring plan, the regulator reportedly stated that “the supervisory staff of DICJ can perform supervisory duties at any time and without prior notice.”
The statement also reads: “When they [the monitoring officers] properly identify themselves, the entity must allow the monitoring officers access to the site where the monitoring is to be carried out and allow them to complete their monitoring work.”
According to the source, the bill includes a range of penalties for concessionaires skirting the law by performing credit operations through other companies or assigning credit authorizations to other persons. The ”penalty scheme” includes fines of between MOP$2 million to MOP$5 million (US$246,000 to US$615,000) for any breach. It also anticipates a fine of between MOP$600,000 and MOP$1.5 million (US$109,000 and US$185,000) for licensed junkets violating the respective applicable regulation.
More specifically, Article 8 of the bill, General Obligations of Credit Entities, reportedly requires the concessionaire or gaming junket to establish “an appropriate system of credit risk control and to conduct credit business in a prudent manner”, “to establish a clear system of credit activity records and to put in place security measures for data protection” and “to establish an effective and sound mechanism for handling customer complaints”.
The bill was reportedly announced by Macau Executive Council last month. DICJ Director Adriano Marques Ho stated on the occasion: “The bill will be referred to the Legislative Assembly for scrutiny and voting, and is still in draft form. The bill confirms that the only credit entities are the concessionaire and the gaming junkets and that management companies will no longer be credit entities.”
The bill awaits the approval of the Legislative Assembly to be signed into law.