Friday November 1, 2013 : ANOTHER RECORD FOR CHINA'S GAMBLING MECCA
Macau gambling revenue up 31.7 percent as Golden Week brings in the punters.
Gambling revenue in the Chinese gambling island of Macau surged 31.7 percent to a record high in October year-on-year, after a week-long national holiday brought in hordes of keen mainland punters over Golden Week.
Island casinos delivered revenues totalling 36.48 billion patacas ($4.6 billion) in October 2013 – the highest monthly figure on record, according to government data released on Friday. Analysts had forecast October growth in the world's biggest gambling market, to be up 27-30 percent.
China's Golden Week national holiday over the first week of October, saw a 10.7 percent increase in visitors from mainland China compared to a year earlier. Visitor arrivals totalled 7.76 million for the third quarter of 2013.
The lack of hotel rooms in Macau is a key constraint in terms of pushing revenue growth higher casino executives say. While eight resorts are in the works along with additional hotels, new capacity is unlikely to come online before the end of 2014, reports the Reuters news agency.
Infrastructure developments in the coming years are expected to help lift the number of visitors to Macau, and a bridge joining Hong Kong, Zhuhai and Macau is set to open by 2016, while expanded intercity rail links will shorten the time of travel from China's northern cities to the gambling centre.
Plans are also in place to upgrade Macau's capacity-constrained ferry terminals and international airport.