OPINION-Molly-what?

As it happens so often, the announcement was rich in vocabulary and short on details. I’m talking about the new star in the movie universe. Without further ado, welcome Mollywood (you see the connection).

If I’m allowed a short detour, the sobriquet is somewhat unfortunate. A brief internet search would have shown that much and possibly avoid future misunderstandings. There is already an “official” Mollywood in southern India. In some parts of the Anglo-Saxon slang world, the expression may also provide the opportunity for less than tasteful puns.

But leave those lateral issues aside. Focus: Macau will turn into the brightest star in the movie world sky. New riches and the much-desired diversification are on the way. The difficulty is: The more one tries to find out, the less straightforward things start to look. 

First, most media correctly identify the source of the news, but fail to clarify that it is not a news media, not in the usual sense of the word. It is a provider of press releases for businesses. There’s nothing wrong with that trade, as such, but readers should be aware that the ‘news’ they are reading is mostly, if not wholly, a cut-and-paste of the original press release. It does not involve subsequent validation or clarification of the contents.

How will that happen? Where is the money coming from? What is the timeframe? Nothing is explained. It also appears that the local cultural authorities were surprised. Someone wants to make us the center of the world, and our government was not even informed, let alone consulted?

Then we realize that the plan is for Hengqin. Forgive me for mentioning that last time we checked, the island was still part of Zhuhai. Unless an annexation is in the cards, it is worth just about zero for the diversification of the Macau economy or its GDP. When and if it happens, it may have some indirect benefits (or costs, also) for us, but that can be said about almost any development taking place across the border.

Now, here is the big thing: The international headquarters will be located in Macau. (Note the subtle introduction of the word “international,” which gets lost in many a cut-and-paste.) That appears to make more sense. What is there not to like about the legal and financial facilities that are not available on the other side of the Border Gate? But, then, it starts to look more like “offshoring.”