Studio City ‘qualified’ for casino bid: Chui

Gaming operator Melco Crown Entertainment Ltd is “fully qualified” to apply for a casino in its Studio City project on Cotai, Chief Executive Fernando Chui Sai On said yesterday. Secretary for Transport and Public Works, Lau Si Io, and Secretary for Economy and Finance, Francis Tam Pak Yuen, have had different responses to whether Studio City would include a casino or not. After Mr Lau said several times that Studio City would not include gaming facilities, Mr Tam announced on Friday that the project was eligible to host a casino. Mr Chui said yesterday he sees no “contradiction in the explanations of the two secretaries, as well as no conflicts in the government policy.” He explained that Studio City’s land grant application to the Lands, Public Works and Transport Bureau, under Mr Lau, didn’t include a casino. But Melco Crown Entertainment Ltd later applied to Mr Tam, whose portfolio includes gaming, Mr Chui said.