Macau, China, 10 July – Gross revenues from Macau’s gaming sector in the first six months of the year totaled around patacas 25 billion, up 14 percent in a year-on-year comparison with 2005, industry sources said.
The 21 casinos operating in Macau during the first half of 2006 offered 1,925 gaming tables and 4,533 slot machines, respectively 277 and 310 more than the same period last year, a source in the gaming industry said.
The Macau government levies indirect and indirect taxes totaling about 39% on gross casino takings.
Macau’s state budget, often drawn up conservatively, forecasts direct tax receipts from gaming in 2006 to reach patacas 17.1 billion, a figure that will be topped as gross gaming revenues of patacas 52 billion are predicted, which would net direct tax receipts of patacas 18.2 billion.
Macau’s gaming sector, the main engine of the territory’s economy and source of state revenues, has seen significant growth since 2002 when the government liberalized the sector by awarding three casino licenses to end the 40-year monopoly of Stanley Ho. (macauhub)