The government of Macau reportedly issued a warning yesterday detailing that the city’s first-quarter gross domestic product (GDP) had dropped by some 3.2% year-on-year in real terms due in large part to a downturn in internal investment and tourist spend.
According to a report citing official figures from the enclave’s Statistics and Census Service, the results for the three months to the end of March concluded ten consecutive quarters of year-on-year GDP growth and showed that the comparative amount visiting gamblers had contributed to the local economy had shrunk by 0.6%.
GGRAsia reported that the government statistics also revealed that the sum of cash tourists had spent in Macau on non-gambling activities over the three-month period had decreased by 0.3% year-on-year while real investment had plummeted by 32.1%. The notification purportedly moreover blamed this weakening on ‘feeble growth’ that had led ‘to increased downward pressure on the economy’ despite a comparable 21.2% rise in the number of quarterly visitors.
Reportedly read a statement from the Statistics and Census Service…
“Exports of gaming services and other tourism services reversed from an uptrend.”
Macau is home to over 35 casinos including the giant MGM Cotai venue from Hong Kong-listed operator MGM China Holdings Limited as well as SJM Holdings Limited’s iconic Casino Grand Lisboa and it reportedly saw GDP for the whole of 2018 grow by around 4.7% year-on-year. This result purportedly marked a second consecutive annual rise and came as twelve-month aggregated gross gaming revenues swelled by around 14% to reach almost $37.5 billion.
However, Macau has since reportedly recorded a 0.5% year-on-year decline in first-quarter aggregated gross gaming revenues to slightly above $9.4 billion although May’s result of about $3.2 billion was some 1.8% better off than for the same 31-day period in 2018.