The Economy and Finance Secretary for Macau, Lionel Leong Vai Tac (pictured), has reportedly revealed that local officials are currently preparing the groundwork for a public tender that is to determine who will be allowed to operate casinos in the city following the expiration of its current six concessions in 2022.

Supportive statement:

According to a report from GGRAsia, Leong made the disclosure during a Saturday event almost a month after the enclave’s Chief Executive, Fernando Chui Sai On, detailed that there is no need for lawmakers to delay the launch of such a process.

Chui reportedly earlier stated that Macau ‘has sufficient conditions to launch a public tender’ and would be able to do so after conducting ‘some internal work and amendments to existing legislation.’ Regarding these alterations, he specifically mentioned Administrative Regulation 26/2001, which lays out the terms and conditions for such tenders, alongside the gaming frameworks enumerated in the jurisdiction’s Law 16/2001.

‘Big six’ operators:

GGRAsia reported that the former Portuguese enclave recently extended by a further two years the casino licenses held by operators MGM China Holdings Limited and SJM Holdings Limited. This move means that all of the enclave’s ‘big six’ gambling firms, which also include Melco Resorts and Entertainment Limited and Galaxy Entertainment Group Limited as well as the local Sands China Limited and Wynn Macau Limited subordinates of Las Vegas Sands Corporation and Wynn Resorts Limited respectively, are now due to see their licenses expire on June 26, 2022.

Beneficial extensions:

Leong reportedly declared that these recent extensions will ‘benefit the preparation for the public tender’ and allow the government of Macau to conduct the process in ‘an orderly manner and avoiding any negligence.’ He moreover hinted that any new licenses could feature specific language that would require concessionaires to increase their non-gaming elements and introduce enhanced social safeguards for their employees.