The Macau government has already spent MOP$50 million (US$6.3 million) on the use of 12 hotels designated as quarantine venues for people entering or returning to Macau since the start of the COVID-19 outbreak.
Director of the Macao Government Tourism Office, Maria Helena de Senna Fernandes, told legislators at the Legislative Assembly on Tuesday that the authority had so far spent MOP$70 million in its scope of work for countering the pandemic, including MOP$50 million for utilizing quarantine hotels. Much of the remainder has been spent on sending buses to Hong Kong International Airport to transport returning Macau residents back home.
Quarantine is free for residents while non-residents have had to pay MOP$5,600 for their 14-day medical observation period.
Despite the rising cost of utilizing the quarantine hotels, the number of hotels currently in use has now fallen from 12 to nine with two more removed from the list this week.
All guests in the Regency Art Hotel and Treasure Hotel have now finished their 14-day quarantine and the two hotels will reopen to the public after disinfection and cleaning. As of 7 April, a total of 1,469 people are still undergoing quarantine in Macau’s nine designated hotels.
Casino Taipa had suspended operations on 19 March due to the utilization of Regency Art Hotel. The Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau (DICJ) told Inside Asian Gaming on Tuesday that SJM has already applied for the ongoing suspension of gaming operations at Casino Taipa while deep cleaning and maintenance works are conducted. The property will resume operations once cleaning works are finished.
Meanwhile, the MGTO has asked the Legislative Assembly to raise an extra MOP$37 million for Macau’s Tourism Fund in order to assist the tourism industry in recovering once the pandemic begins to ease. The initial budget of the Tourism Fund this year is MOP$1.2 billion.