Macau – Chinese Lunar New Year was set to start on Saturday 25th January 2020, however the Macao Government Tourism Office has today announced that it has cancelled all planned events and celebrations just two days before the Year of the Rat initiation.
Undoubtedly the announcement is a blow to Macau in terms of its gross gaming revenue, particularly the gaming establishments in the Special Administrative Region including Las Vegas Sands, SJM Holdings and Galaxy Entertainment – a public Hong Kong Stock Exchange listed company established in 1988.
The announcement to cancel Chinese Lunar New Year celebrations comes after a second case of the deadly coronavirus was confirmed in a male tourist visiting Macau from Wuhan; a Chinese city that is currently on lockdown and reportedly where the virus outbreak originated.
Full details of the event cancellations are yet to be released. Sources close to the gambling capital of Asia are reporting that some events may still go ahead whilst others will be pushed back to a later than scheduled date.
Macau’s gambling industry is seven times bigger than Las Vegas and the region is one of the largest recipients of revenue from tourism in the world.
Trinh Nguyen, Senior Economist, Emerging Asia at Natixis since 2015 commented:
“Macau cancels all Lunar New Year festivities as it got 2nd case of the Wuhan Virus. Not good. Fear will infect all fun related activities & not good news at all for Q1 growth figures, especially retail sales”.
The Macao Government Tourism Office is arranging a series of meetings over the next two days with contractors and organisers of the Chinese Lunar New Year celebrations to outline its measures on virus spreading prevention.
Hotels are advised to report any details of guests that are scheduled to stay at in their accommodation from the cities of Wuhan and Huanggang.