The taxation of gambling plays an important part in the regulation of the activity and raises invaluable revenue for local and country-wide initiatives. Currently, gambling operators in Macau pay a 35% tax on their gross gaming revenue. The operators are due to pay another 5% of their gross gaming revenue in the form of tax and help with different initiatives in the country. But besides taxes, the Macau SAR Government now secured a new stream of revenue by implementing new annual fees for casino floors.
Macau SAR Implements New Casino Floor Fees Only recently, on December 31, 2022, the previous rules for gambling concessions expired. As of the start of 2023, a new type of fee was introduced for gambling operators which now have to “rent” back the casino floors, a report released by IAG reveals. This additional annual fee will be depending on the size of the casino floors. The cost per square meter will also be dependent on the years of concession and will undergo indexing.
Under the new 10-year concessions rules, the gambling operators will pay MOP$750 ($94) per square meter of their gambling floor space during the first three years. However, for year 2 and year 3, the charge may be increased based on Macau’s average price index. Then, for year 4, the fee per square meter will be changed to MOP$2,500 ($311) per square meter. After that, for the remaining period up to the 10th year, the fee per square meter may undergo similar indexation.
Government Hopes GGR, Visitation Will Increase in 2023 The government in Macau estimates that gambling gross gaming revenue may hit MOP$130 billion ($16.2 billion) this year. If that happens, proceeds from gambling are expected to hit MOP$52 billion ($6.5 billion), delivering a solid cash injection for the government’s coffers. Still, whether or not this will happen remains uncertain, considering that in 2022, Macau’s GGR plummeted by 50%. Last year, Macau posted a GGR of MOP$42.2 billion ($5.3 billion), marking a 51.4% decrease when compared to the GGR reported a year earlier, in 2021. What’s more, the revenue last year marked the worst figure for Macau since 2004.
Without any doubt, the GGR result was impacted negatively by uncertain regulations as well as sporadic COVID-19 outbreaks. A decline in traveling and tourist visitation also contributed to the result. Still, in hopes for a better future, Macau officials said they hope to see an uptick in visitation. The head of Macau’s Government Tourism Office, Maria Helene de Senna Fernandes, recently acknowledged that the SAR expects to see an average of 40,000 daily visitors this year.