Macau – Lawmakers in Macau have been discussing the possibility of a tax reduction for gaming operators under re-tendering terms. However the Macau Chief Executive stated that the corporations will still have the means to pay the current rate of thirty five percent despite the current Covid-19 pandemic and business downturn.
The Chief Executive, Ho Iat Seng, added that the gaming operators should not bear too much corporate social responsibility following the expectations and actions of those involved in the gaming industry of late:
“Gaming operators should not bear too much irrelevant CSR. For example, building dorms for employees should not be their responsibility. Paying tax is their main contribution to us, the government then uses the fiscal surplus to construct the city. It’s not appropriate to force gaming concessions to do everything.”
Ho Iat Seng was on record criticising the industry’s leading corporations for lack of assistance during the pandemic, particularly offering up hotels for medical usage.
However, it was concluded that poor communication was more to blame:
“The Director of Macau Government Tourism Office sent letters to every gaming operator at that time, and most of them rejected it. But after I spoke about CSR, many senior management personnel contacted me and said they were willing to provide hotels for us. It’s probably because staff at lower management levels were too bureaucratic at that time.
It might have been better if I sent requests personally! We didn’t expect hundreds of people to return from foreign countries so quickly (in March) and it was more than the capacities of the older and smaller-scale hotels could handle. We had to find more hotels urgently.”
Macau’s chief executive also spoke highly of those who were quick to support the government in combating the spread of Coronavirus:
“SJM provided many hotels such as Grand Lapa and Jai Alai to us, almost to give us all they could. Then Sheraton Grand Macao gave use 2,000 rooms for quarantine, which quickly resolved our difficulties,” he said.
It’s much easier now. I appreciate the six gaming concessionaires’ efforts and support. Several casinos had to close due to their hotels being utilized as quarantine venues.”
Latest figures out of Macau state that there are approximately 28 current cases of Covid-19 still in the special administrative region of China.