In Macau, the government has reportedly pushed forward by almost three years the deadline to its requirement that at least 85% of all middle and upper-level casino management positions be filled by local residents.

According to a report from local television and radio broadcaster Teledifusao De Macau, the locals-first strategy was first announced in September as part of the city’s Five-Year Development Plan and had called for the 85% target to be met by 2020.

However, Wong Chi Hong, Labour Affairs Bureau Director for the former Portuguese enclave, reportedly explained that the percentage of Macau residents working in middle and upper-level casino positions had gone from 81.9% in January of 2016 to 84.8% by September and that the government hoped that it would be able to meet the 85% target “when it comes to local managers and top executives” by the end of this year.

“We are introducing measures to temporarily control the hiring of outside managers,” Wong told Teledifusao De Macau. “For instance, it seems there are over 100 outsiders on resort facility management and we have already told the gambling companies we will not renew those work permits.”

Wong further declared that the Labour Affairs Bureau was working to change the law in order to ban mainland China residents from easily getting a middle or upper-level casino job, which would mean that they would first be required to obtain a work permit after being offered a position. Teledifusao De Macau explained that this move would complement a policy introduced in November that reduced by two the number of days a non-resident has to exit the city after leaving employment to eight.