COVID-19 Virus Hits Casino Revenue As Entertainment Palaces Shuts Down

COVID-19 Virus Hits Casino Revenue As Entertainment Palaces Shuts Down
Reading Time: 4 Min
Image: Shutterstock
Manila’s Entertainment City turned into a ghost town for the last two months as the government imposed lockdowns to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. The biggest integrated casinos in Manila halted operations following the mandate of the government to close operations. Roads around the four biggest resorts are empty as people follow the stay-at-home order of the government.

Stay-at-home mandate hits tourism

The government strictly imposed Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) protocols since mid-March due to the fast spread of the virus in the country’s populated capital. Casino resorts in the capital city closed, guards on duty were replaced with high alert cops prepared to send people back at home or into a welcoming cell of the city prison.

The strict government measures caused a massive hit in all sectors, especially tourism. Andrea Domingo, who heads the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp, said they are losing money just like everybody else during an interview.

The virus struck almost every gambling market in the world, hitting tourism across Asia and drying cash flows of casinos on shutdown.

Traffic remained subdued in almost every place, including Macao, South Korea, Vietnam, and New Zealand, since People are hesitant to get out of their houses in fear of the virus and the strict border checkpoints and stay-at-home measures. Casino shutdowns in Macao only lasted for 15 days while the other countries started reopening casinos recently.

Casinos around the globe struggled because of COVID-19

Erlin Salim, the analyst at Fitch, said that they think it is likely to remain lower than in 2019 as we anticipate the economic implication from the pandemic may drag on, but they expect a recovery in 2021.

Silver Heritage Group, an Australia-listed casino operator, forced to shut down operations in Nepal, might be the first casino to struggle to survive. Local media reported that Hong Kong-listed Imperial Pacific International warned that its casino might go bankrupt if they forced to pay a $5.6 million court order to a contractor.

Analysts at Bernstein Research noted the decline of Macao’s revenue by 96 percent for the first 24 days of May compared to last year’s. SJM Holdings announced a loos amounting to 409 million HK dollars for the first three months of the year, while Wynn Macau reported a decline of revenue from $190.6 million to $154.2 million.

Global COVID-19 cases continue rising, further threatens market

The COVID-19 cases reached 5,688,840, with 352,287 recorded deaths all around the globe as of May 27.

Reports of new cases pop up every day everywhere in the world without news of a cure or a vaccine. Experts believe that economic activities will never return to its normal level unless a vaccine for the deadly virus surfaced.

People are still scared to come out and go back to work while the threat of the COVID-19 pandemic continues. Some casinos in nations like New Zealand, South Korea, the US, and Europe started resuming operations. Still, the government and their employees are urging them to impose strict health and safety measures against the COVID-19 virus.

Read Also: