The region of Macau, China has just celebrated 10 years of success following the area’s return of control from the Portuguese back to the Chinese. Many global factors have led to a relative recession in the region, but at this point, investors and administrators in Macau are turning their eyes to nations like Malaysia to help carry them through.
Malaysia is very important to Macau, due to the massive amount of tourists and gamblers that hail from there. Malaysian gambling law permits most forms of gambling, but there is only one casino in the entire nation. As a result, many Malaysians feel that if they are going to travel to visit a casino, they might as well go to Macau which is home to state-of-the-art casinos and is, at this point, quite accessible.
According to a Macau Government Tourist Office representative in Malaysia, flights leave Kuala Lampur 3 times daily, 3 times weekly from Kuching and 4 times weekly from Kota Kinabalu and Penang directly to Macau. From January to November of last year, there were a total of 286,000 visitors to Macau from Malaysia. One year prior, however, there were over 400,000 guests.
This recession in visitors is attributed to the H1N1 pandemic, for the most part, in conjunction with the economic instability felt worldwide. From this point on, the number of visitors can be expected to grow quickly.
Macau offers much more than just gambling, and this is something many people don’t think about. Many Malaysians reportedly visit Macau in order to check out the Portuguese-influence heritage, unique Macanese food and entertainment, 5 UNESCO accredited heritage sites, and the new typhoon-shaped Science Centre.
Even with this other forms of entertainment available, the root cause for Malaysians making the short trip to Macau is in order to gamble. Those who don’t feel like making the trip can visit online casinos in Malaysia.
Internet gambling in Malaysia is quite simple considering the measures the government takes to prohibit it. Some sites are blocked and banks are not supposed to help in transactions, but those who wish to gamble can easily get around these obstacles. The government has no jurisdiction over foreign based sites.