International casino hub Macau has posted record gambling profits for September, despite both a typhoon and problems with overcrowding.
Under Chinese gambling laws, gambling is outlawed everywhere except in Macau and Hong Kong, who share up the different businesses between them. As such, Macau gathers most of the Chinese casino enthusiasts in the special administrative region, leading to the recent introduction of special measures to clear overcrowding on the main strip.
First, though, gambling revenue in Macau rose a massive 21.4% year on year for September – totaling a massive $3.63 billion – fueled by visitors from the mainland. Despite this massive revenue, it was actually at the lowest end of estimated growth figures after a typhoon hit the region on September 22nd. The typhoon disrupted air, road, and rail links into the city, with lower numbers of gamblers reported in the aftermath.
Macau has recently surged past Las Vegas as the world’s number one gambling hub, and the city’s growth sees no signs of abating, despite the rise in popularity of mobile casinos. With the Asian market set to be targeted by casino companies in the coming years, it remains to be seen if Macau can keep hold of its top spot, however.
Yet the city’s creaking infrastructure could prove a barrier in the way of expansion. With a number of government projects having no timescale for completion, tourists could find themselves with a struggle to get to the 13,000 extra hotel rooms due to open between now and 2017.
Indeed, despite a new bridge between Macau, Hong Kong, and Zhuhai due to open in 2016, all the recent gambling news in the region has been focused upon new casino projects in Far East Russia and Japan. With the Primorye Gaming Zone close to Vladivostok due to build a massive resort casino, Russia could suck away Chinese gamblers from the North of the country.