International edition
September 23, 2021

More Chinese tourists expected

Duterte's visit to China revives hopes for gambling growth in the Philippines

Duterte's visit to China revives hopes for gambling growth in the Philippines
Listed gaming companies stand to benefit from the Duterte administration’s stronger ties with China as more mainland Chinese tourists are expected to come to the Philippines to play.
Philippines | 11/03/2016

Listed gaming companies stand to benefit from the Duterte administration’s stronger ties with China as more mainland Chinese tourists are expected to come to the Philippines to play.

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illy Ocier, vice chairman and executive director of Belle Corp., expressed optimism there would be more tourists coming to the Philippines from China.

Belle is a premier developer of the high-end Tagaytay Highlands and City of Dreams Manila, an integrated resort facility in Entertainment City, built in partnership with Melco Crown Philippines Resorts Corp.

“We are optimistic that visa requirements would be relaxed for visiting Chinese tourists to the country,” Ocier said.

President Duterte went on a State Visit to China two weeks ago, bringing with him a 400-strong business delegation

In a report, listed market research firm COL Financial said the growing number of tourists from China should boost revenues of gaming firms.

COL said all three listed casino companies – Resorts World Manila, Melco Crown and Solaire Resorts operator Bloomberry – would benefit.

Bloomberry and Melco Crown stand to benefit more as they are geared toward servicing the VIP market.

In the first half of the year, revenues from VIP players accounted for 49.5 percent of Bloomberry’s gaming revenues and 43.1 percent of Melco Crown’s gaming revenues.

On the other hand, Resorts World’s revenues from VIP players represented 36.6 percent of the total

According to COL, retail companies like SM and Store Specialists Inc. which focus on discretionary products should also benefit given growing tourism spending.

Ocier also sees tourism and dining benefiting from more Chinese visitors.

“We hope some tourists will find their way to our integrated resorts for their dining and entertainment experience as well,” Ocier said.

COL said Gokongwei-owned budget airline Cebu Pacific would also benefit from the growing number of Chinese tourists as this would lead to higher passenger volumes.

“However, its ability to capitalize on the strong demand would be limited in the short term given that the airport in Manila is already operating at full capacity,” COL said.

Justino Calaycay of A&A Securities said the state visit to China would indeed boost tourism in the Philippines among other sectors

“State visits to China and Japan have brought billions of dollars of investment pledges. Philippine government officials say the funds will flow to important sectors and that should boost the economy further – education, agriculture, health, infrastructure and tourism, among others,” Calaycay said.

In the past four years, the number of tourists coming from China to the Philippines increased by 19.2 percent during the past four years.

In fact, Chinese tourist arrivals jumped 50.3 percent to 484,567 from January to August this year.

“China is now the Philippines’ third largest visitor market, accounting 12 percent of total tourist arrivals during the first eight months of 2016. The value of Philippine exports to China has also grown at a CAGR of 4.2 percent during the past 10 years making it our third largest export market with a 10.9 percent share in 2015,” COL Financial said.

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