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ISSUE 118 - Feb 2014
What are your expectations for the gross gaming revenue growth of Macau’s gaming industry in 2014?
Growth above 10 percent
Growth from 0 to 10 percent

Macau Govt reassured Las Vegas Sands’ bankers

Posted: 5/16/2013 5:05:59 PM
Rating:     0% ( votes)

The secretary for Economy and Finance Francis Tam Pak Yuen sent a letter to one of Las Vegas Sands’ bankers in 2006 to assure the company that it could operate in Macau autonomously from its Chinese partner, Galaxy Casino S.A., even in the event of termination and extinction of Galaxy Casino’s concession contract.

Venetian Macau S.A., a unit of Las Vegas Sands Corp, is technically a sub-concessionaire of Galaxy Casino S.A. since 2002.

Our sister publication Business Daily has seen a copy of the letter, sent to Bank of Nova Scotia – at the time a lead arranger of project debt for Las Vegas Sands – and signed by Mr Tam.

That assurance was important, because some of the gaming operator’s banking partners – many of them Western companies – were concerned that the company’s Macau rights, technically and officially a sub-concession, could be at risk if the supposedly senior partner Galaxy Casino SA, a local unit of Galaxy Entertainment Group, lost its primary licence.

The letter states that “Venetian Macau S.A. shall be able to exploit games of chance and other games in casino [sic] in Macau autonomously from Galaxy Casino S.A., even in the event of termination and extinction of Galaxy Casino S.A.’s concession contract…”

Business Daily has also learned that some members of the government wanted the facts in Mr Tam’s 2006 assurance letter to be recorded in Macau’s Official Gazette as a matter of public policy.

But it was decided not to do so, reportedly for technical, legal, reasons.

During the second trial of Hong Kong businessman Richard Suen’s lawsuit, which ended early this week, Sands chairman Sheldon Adelson explained to the jury that the impetus for involvement in Macau was driven by the firm’s own management.

But sources have suggested to Business Daily that all the Las Vegas operators interested in Macau were concerned that operating here could have put their Nevada licences at risk.

Sources also said Macau officials liked the quality of The Venetian Las Vegas compared to some of the other casinos around it on the Las Vegas Strip.

They also liked the company’s focus on the conventions business.

In other news developments, Las Vegas Sands will appeal the verdict by a Nevada state court that has awarded Mr Suen US$70 million (MOP560 million) payable by Las Vegas Sands.

Mr Suen claimed that he helped the operator to get a licence to operate casinos in Macau.

Las Vegas Sands is the parent company of Macau-based gaming operator Sands China Ltd.

Other Macau Latest News

Macau chief executive optimistic about economy

Fernando Chui says govt current spending will be unimpaired by gaming slump

Exporters expect little change in business in H1

Govt survey finds exporters consider labour scarcity to be main impediment

MICE takings grow 52.7 pct to MOP278.4 mln in 2014

Of which subsidies, growing only bit more slowly, make up nearly six-tenths

CTM blames Huawei for problem on govt website

Telco says supplier apologised for faulty software that let film be shown

Chui commissions report on Macau tourism capacity

Chief executive confirms review of individual visa scheme in the pipeline

Last day for trading Melco Crown in HK is June 29

After that, NASDAQ will be the only place to trade casino operator’s shares

Homes in Hengqin developments illegally pre-sold

Official says two developers are offenders, but fails to say which ones

Retail sales value grows only marginally in 2014

Newspaper says anti-graft drive, protests deterred shoppers from mainland

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