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China’s warning against gambling in S’pore to have no impact on GEN Malaysia

March 21, 2024 Malaysia iGaming & GamblingIndustry Updates

Commentators predict that Malaysia’s casino industry won’t be much impacted by China’s embassy in Singapore’s advice to its citizens not to gamble abroad.

They believe that although the statement could have an effect, it would undoubtedly hurt Singapore’s casino resorts, which mostly rely on foreign visitors.

The CEO of Fortress Capital Group, Datuk Thomas Yong, said that the gaming business in Southeast Asia would suffer if Chinese citizens are prohibited from engaging in international gaming. He did point out that Malaysia could have less of an impact since most casino patrons are Malaysian and Singaporean, with very few Chinese visitors making up the majority. Yong went on to say that as Chinese nationals contribute significantly to the revenue of Singapore’s casinos, particularly in the high roller segment, these establishments would be particularly hurt.

Similar remarks were made by Tushar Mohata, an analyst with Nomura, who said that although integrated resorts in Singapore and Malaysia may be slightly harmed by the warning, it is impossible to predict the precise effect at this time. He emphasized that, in contrast to Malaysia, whose economy is more centered on internal travel, Singapore resorts depend more on foreign visitors.

Chong Tjen-San of CGS International also played down the impact on Genting Malaysia Bhd, pointing out that Resorts World Genting has never relied heavily on Chinese visitors. He stated that while the number of Chinese visitors to the resort doubled in the fourth quarter of 2023, Singapore and Indonesia accounted for the bulk of foreign guests.

A long-term comeback was anticipated by analysts for the gaming industries in Malaysia and Singapore due to the anticipated return of Chinese visitors in 2024. Experts are generally positive about Genting Malaysia despite the warning from China’s embassy, with most advising a “buy.”

China has taken a strong stance against Chinese individuals who gamble across Southeast Asia, collaborating with countries like the Philippines and Vietnam to reduce international gaming. In an effort to thwart such activities, the Chinese embassy in Singapore has also declared the opening of a reporting site and invited Chinese nationals to report any suspicious gaming activity.

Original story by: The Edge Malaysia

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