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LIDL wins license to operate casino resort in Manila

Niji Narayan

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LIDL wins license to operate casino resort in Manila
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Landing International Development Ltd (LIDL), a Hong Kong-based investment company that operates casinos, has obtained provisional approval to construct a $1.5b resort casino in Manila.

The company will be operating the resort in Manila’s Entertainment City gaming zone through its subsidiary Landing Resorts Philippines Development Corporation.

The agreement between LIDL and the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) is for operating the resort for 15 years term from the date issued or until 11 July 2033. As of now the license does not allow LIDL to offer video streaming or internet gambling, unless PAGCOR declares otherwise.

LIDL has committed to spending at least $1b (and likely up to $1.5b) on its Entertainment City venue, which the company hopes to open by “early 2022.” The company has scheduled a groundbreaking ceremony on the development site on August 7.

The company cautioned that the project’s fate was contingent upon it receiving “other approvals” necessary to commence construction, “and these may or may not be granted.” Ordinarily, this is a boilerplate clause, but in LIDL’s case, nothing can be taken for granted.

Just last month, government auditors expressed concerns over the legality of the land lease deal LIDL had struck with its local partner, the Nayong Pilipino Foundation. The Philippine Commission on Audit expressed alarm at the favourable terms that LIDL had secured, which were far less steep than lease prices paid by other Entertainment City operators.

Should the project go forward, LIDL is promising a Filipino cultural theme park, an indoor waterpark, an indoor movie-based theme park, a convention centre, luxury hotels, retail and dining areas, along with a 28k-square-meter gaming floor with a “sky casino” theme.

LIDL chairman Dr. Yang Zhihui (pictured) thanked PAGCOR “for their vote of confidence” in granting the provisional license, while pledging that the planned resort “will contribute positively” to the nation’s tourism sector – particularly via guests from South Korea – and create “significant job opportunities” both in the construction phase and afterward.

Entertainment City currently boasts three active resort casinos – Solaire Resort & Casino, City of Dreams Manila and Okada Manila – while Travellers International’s West Side City Resorts World is planning a 2020 launch.

 

Source: calvinayre.com

Asia

Singapore Casinos to Remain Closed Beyond June 1

Niji Narayan

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Singapore Casinos to Remain Closed Beyond June 1
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The gaming venues of Singapore’s Resorts World Sentosa and Marina Bay Sands are to remain shut beyond June 1, the Casino Regulatory Authority (CRA) of Singapore confirmed.

Singapore will see three-quarters of its economy resume normal operations when measures to fight the Covid-19 pandemic are eased from June 2, the government said last week.

“The Ministry of Trade and Industry announced on 19 May the list of businesses which are allowed to resume operations from 2 June 2020 onwards. Casinos are not included within the list,” CRA said.

“The government will further monitor and assess developments in the Covid-19 situation to determine the appropriate timelines for the gradual resumption of more businesses and activities, including the casinos,” it added.

“With the phased approach, we are ready to help our workers go back to work and allow businesses to resume in a safe way,” the government said.

Marina Bay Sands said on its official website that the property “remains closed in support of the Singapore government’s ongoing efforts to combat the Covid-19 situation.”

“We are working closely with the authorities on our reopening schedule, in line with Singapore’s gradual resumption of business activities in phases,” it added.

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Adriano Ho to Take Over as Director of DICJ Next Month

Niji Narayan

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Adriano Ho to Take Over as Director of DICJ Next Month
Photo Source: ghi888.com
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Lei Wai Nong, the Secretary for Economy and Finance, has confirmed that Adriano Ho will take over as the Director of Macau’s Gaming of Inspection and Coordination Bureau (DICJ) on June 10, replacing Paulo Martins Chan.

Chan will step down on June 9 with Ho to be formally appointed the following day.

Lei said that progress on amendments to Macau’s gaming law, which is set to form the legislative basis for the retendering of gaming concessions, will not be affected by the change of director.

“The authority of making decisions about the gaming law are in the hands of the Chief Executive and the five Secretaries. The DICJ’s job is mostly to execute our decisions and policies,” he said.

Ho is currently a key advisor to the Secretary for Security, Wong Sio Chak, having previously headed the Police Criminal Investigation Department and the Gaming-related and Economic Crimes Investigation Department.

Discussing the appointment with media, Lei expressed his belief that Ho has enough experience in the field of gaming to perform his new role but denied his appointment was intended to strengthen regulations on gaming operators.

“Regulating the gaming industry is a persistent work for the government, it is not future tense. No matter who is the DICJ director, we’ll continue with our regulation as usual to ensure healthy development of the gaming industry,” Lei said.

The Secretary also emphasised that Chan’s departure is a “normal personnel change,” revealing Chan had offered his resignation last year but had been retained for another six months to aid transition – even though his tenure had been extended by a full 12-months until 1 December 2020.

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Suncity Group Venture Secures Casino Operating License for Vietnam IR Hoiana

Niji Narayan

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Suncity Group Venture Secures Casino Operating License for Vietnam IR Hoiana
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Hoi An South Development Co Ltd, the Vietnam-based joint venture of which Suncity Group holds a 34% stake, has secured a casino operating license for its Vietnamese integrated resort, Hoiana. The license is valid until 10 December 2080.

Hoiana, a joint venture between Suncity, Chow Tai Fook and VinaCapital Group, is located in Hoi An South in Vietnam’s Quang Nam province, with the US$1 billion Phase 1 development to span more than 165 hectares. It will include a casino, restaurants, an 18-hole golf course and more than 1000 hotel rooms.

“I am thrilled to be granted a Casino Operating License in Hoiana. We are now ready. The Casino Operating License will visualize my re-imagination of Suncity. Hoiana is now finally allowed to open its doors to offer guests an authentic Vietnamese experience embellished with sun, sea and sand,” Alvin Chau, CEO of Suncity Group, said.

“This is a very exciting time to witness my vision for Suncity to sprout from ground zero into a truly integrated resort company – a true metamorphosis for Suncity. Stay tuned for Hoiana’s exclusive preview in the summer and the Grand Opening in 2021,” Alvin Chau added.

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