International edition
September 16, 2021

The measures become effective this month

Melco Crown offers Macau casino staff unpaid leave

(Macau).- Melco Crown Entertainment, the Macau casino venture backed by billionaire James Packer and gambling magnate Stanley Ho’s son, will offer staff unpaid leave as a recession and travel restrictions damp betting in the city.


mployees will be given as many as three days of unpaid leave each month and sabbaticals, the company said in an e- mailed statement today. The measures become effective this month.

Macau casino operators face falling revenue next year on China’s cooling economy and because of mainland travel caps that have hit visitor numbers. Las Vegas Sands Corp., controlled by Sheldon Adelson, last month halted development of a us$ 12 billion project in the city, leading to at least 9,000 job losses.

Melco Crown’s plans “will enable us to best deal with the current turbulence in market conditions,” Co-Chairman Lawrence Ho said in the statement. “When the market revives, as it most surely will, Melco Crown will be the best poised to benefit.”

The unpaid leave will allow the company to avoid large- scale redundancies and provide stability in Macau’s job market, the casino operator said. Average monthly revenue at Macau’s casinos may fall to us$ 877 million next year from us$ 1 billion so far this year, Edmund Ho, Macau’s chief executive, said November 11.

Casino revenue in Macau has more than doubled since 2004, when the government ended the 40-year monopoly of Stanley Ho, not related to the chief executive, and allowed foreign companies Las Vegas Sands, Wynn Resorts Ltd. and MGM Mirage to operate.

China restricted travel by its citizens to Macau, the only Chinese city where casinos are legal, to limit growth in high- roller gambling in the former Portuguese colony. Mainland Chinese travelers to Hong Kong can no longer visit Macau using the same visa. Since October 1, residents of neighboring Guangdong province have only been allowed one visit to the city every three months.

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