Macau’s casino license holders will be allowed to open ‘foreigner-only’ gaming rooms and issue specific chips for these rooms in a bid to boost the local tourism industry.
According to an by announcement by Macau’s Executive Council, any gaming concessionaire that opts to take up the incentive will be eligible for a waiver on the current 5% additional tax for revenue generated by foreign players.
The rooms are set to be limited to foreign players only from outside Chinese regions and jurisdictions. This means that players from Macau, Hing Kong and Mainland China will not be allowed to use the rooms. The local government has opted to include players from Taiwan in the lost of players exclude from the rooms despite the country not falling under Chinese administration.
Overall gaming taxes will continue to be charged at a rate of 40%, but there will be no additional taxes
Speaking to the local press, the Secretary for Administration and Justice said:
- “currently, the gaming revenue created by these foreign clients is quite low, therefore we hope that these incentivizing measures request, or require, the concessionaires to launch projects to attract foreign tourists.”
The rooms will function much like a traditional VIP room with valid ID such as a passport required to gain entry. At present, only those who gamble more than MOP$500,000 (€59,219) have to provide identification. The announcement also notes that foreign players will still be permitted to play in other areas of the casino.
The new measure will come into effect on January 1st at the same time that the six new gaming concessions also start. An administrative regulation will be published in Macau’s Official Gazette ahead of January.