GGR in Macau Improved in February

The most important gambling hotspot in Asia, Macau, continues its road to recovery from the setbacks imposed by the coronavirus pandemic. However, things don’t look so bad at the moment, as Macau managed to record a 135.6% year-on-year increase in February. The total excess reached last month was $915.21 million.

A report was published by the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau in Macau, which is the official regulator of this enclave. The huge increase in figures happened mainly because all casinos in Macau had to shut their doors entirely for two weeks last year due to the outbreak of Coronavirus. Little was known about the infectious disease back in the day, so this important step had to be made in order to prevent the spread of it.

Macau has generated a total of $1.92 billion for the period of January and February in 2021. If compared to the same period last year, we could still see that the figures are 39.2% lower, as there were no restrictions last January. The numbers are down by 69.5% compared to January and February 2019, when casinos managed to earn a total of $6.29 billion.

All in all, the numbers are starting to improve slowly. Last year, the total GGR for the entire year was $7.56 billion, so there’s definitely hope that 2021 will be much better in that regard. It is still a long way to go, but full recovery for Macau should be possible.

Visitation Figures

According to this source, February 2021 reported the highest aggregated GGR since January 2020, when the coronavirus-related shutdowns weren’t even considered. The visitation this year wasn’t as great as anticipated during the Chinese New Year.

Chinese New Year is one of the most important holidays in China when many residents travel, and Macau is definitely on the bucket list of many visitors. During the early days of Covid-19, when people were still not taking the situation seriously, Macau reported approximately 261,069 visitors for the Golden Week.

This year, these numbers were down to just 90,615. Once again, let’s use 2019 to compare how numbers decreased due to Covid. Namely, during the golden week of 2019, approximately 1.21 million visitors were recorded.

In other words, even though things are looking better compared to the last year, there’s still a lot to do before Macau can restore to its pre-covid state of affairs.

According to analysts Derek Choi and DS Kim from JP Morgan, the figures for February were described as a “bit underwhelming.” However, they believe that this won’t really affect the full-year forecast.

China handles the Covid-19 situation exceptionally well. As a country that has had problems with virus outbreaks before, China has managed to cut the further spread. Most of the quarantine restrictions are lifted, and movement restraints in most places are loosened, meaning more visitors could actually go to Macau in the months to come. This also applies to visitors from Hong Kong, as many residents of the popular city enjoy going to the former Portuguese territory.

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