Macau’s Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau (DICJ) says it is still awaiting additional information on 29 VIP gaming promoters that have yet to be issued a license for 2022.
The DICJ this week published its list of licensed gaming promoters, or junkets, for the year ahead with the 46 approved companies representing a near 50% decline from the 85 licenses issued in January 2021.
Although the DICJ did not provide any details on the reasons for the decline, it is almost certainly linked to mainland China’s crackdown on cross-border gambling which culminated in the arrest of former Sun City Gaming Promotion Company Limited CEO Alvin Chau in late November. Suncity subsequently shut down its Macau junket business in December and does not appear on the DICJ’s list of approved junkets for 2022.
At least some of Macau’s casino concessionaires have also announced plans to end either some or all of their relationships with junkets.
On Thursday – a day after publishing its 2022 junket list – the DICJ revealed that some concessionaires were still updating their own lists of junket operators they cooperate with, delaying completion of all approvals.
“Based on this, on January 26, the Bureau of Gaming Supervision published the 46 licensed gaming promoters with complete documents in advance, according to legal requirements,” it said.
“The remaining 29 will be dealt with in accordance with the law after the related parties have completed the documents.”
The number of licenses junkets in Macau has now fallen in all but one of the nine years since 2013, when the DICJ licensed a record 235 VIP gaming promoters.
It also remains to be seen what the future holds for those still holding a license after a draft bill on amendments to Macau’s gaming law – currently up for debate by the Legislative Assembly – put an end to dedicated junket rooms in the city’s casinos and revenue share arrangements between junkets and Macau’s casino concessionaires.
Other amendments to junket laws contained within the draft bill include each licensed promoter being restricted to “only carry out the activity of promoting games in one concessionaire.”