On June 3rd, 2008, the biggest gambling exhibition in Asia began in the former Portuguese colony of Macau but concerns are growing with the rising labor expenses and infrastructure problems could hinder Macau's gaming growth. According to organizers, more than six thousand gaming professionals from all over the world are expected to join the G2E or the Global Gaming Expo Asia 2008, which is double the number of participants last year.
The three day affair will exhibit the latest slot machines, security software, gambling devices and even weapon detectors from 180 international gaming suppliers. To compliment the beginning of the gambling expo, a survey of trends in the Asian gambling market showed that Asian gaming profits would surpassed U.S. gaming profit by 2012. But the expo comes after the former colony strains after years of good growth, which the Macau government said last year receive profits more than $10.34 billion. Baccarat is one of the main contributor in that overall profit.
This surpassed the overall Las Vegas profit last year. But a gambling analyst from the Credit Suisse in Hong Kong, Gabriel Chan commented that the growth is set to slow down in the next few years. One main factor is employee shortage that has pushed labor costs to the equivalent of 11% of total gambling revenues. In the recent years, Macau has suffered from labor protests by employees concerned about the arrival of mainland China and foreign employee and the downward trend on salary.
Chan is not convinced that the casino facilities would be able to diversify their sources of profits by offering shows like the Cirque Du Soleil of the Venetian Macau, which will open on August 2008. Well-known U.S. gaming giants like the Las Vegas Sands and Wynn have made some good returns in Macau, a city that only has 540,000 residents that are entirely reliant on gambling. Frank Fahrenkopf, the president and chief executive officer of the American Gaming Association said that their survey shows a good future and growth for gaming not only in Macau but even in countries like Japan and Singapore.
Ann Pettersson - 06/30/2008 03:19 PM