Macau (MNA) – The government budget for 2017 had reached MOP98.99 billion (US$12.27 billion), some MOP5.4 billion over anticipated previously.
In the 2017 Budget Performance Report, it was revealed that the amount of income collected by the Macau SAR Government had increased to MOP126.4 billion, up by 14.4 per cent year-on-year.
Income generated from direct taxes increased by MOP14.9 billion from the previous year.
Some MOP92 billion was collected from gaming taxes, marking an increase of MOP14.4 billion from the previous year.
Previous projections by Secretary for Economy and Finance, Lionel Leong Vai Tac show that the government is expecting an income of MOP80.5 billion to be generated from direct gaming taxes in 2018.
From this amount, some MOP336.8 million were collected from junket operators, presenting a jump of 23.5 per cent year-on-year.
This was higher than the estimates the government had for taxes from junket operators, which was initially set at MOP200 million.
Junket operators act as an intermediary between high-rolling gamblers and the VIP segment in casinos, and can run a gamut of services ranging from arranging transport for VIP customers, to collecting of losses from high-rollers.
Direct taxes generate 86.5 per cent of current income, with current estimates that the total is 16.7 per cent higher than the amount generated in 2016.
The Macau SAR Government has received MOP265.7 billion in gross gaming revenues in 2017, which marks a year-on-year increase of 19.1 percent.
Macau’s gross domestic product (GDP) had also increase by 11.6 per cent to reach MOP40.4 billion in 2017.