International edition
November 24, 2020

A 15-day suspension was imposed amid coronavirus fears

Macau casinos to open after suspension to prevent coronavirus spread

Macau casinos to open after suspension to prevent coronavirus spread
Macau Chief Executive Ho Iat-seng, who wore a face mask for his news conference, announced suspension measures with the casino sector a few weeks ago.
Macau | 02/17/2020

On Feb. 4, the Chinese territory's government officials announced the temporary closure of casinos after the coronavirus had sickened 10 people in the city. Now operators such as Sands China, Wynn Macau, SJM Holdings, MGM China, Galaxy Entertainment and Melco Resorts have 30 days to go back to full business.

F

ollowing a 15-day suspension due to coronavirus fears, the government has allowed casinos to resume operations Thursday.

The government announced the temporary closure of the city’s 41 casinos after officials revealed there had been 10 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Macau, where the gambling sites took in more than $37 billion in revenue in 2018.

No new cases of the virus were reported since Feb. 4, officials said.

Casino operators including Sands China, Wynn Macau, SJM Holdings , MGM China, Galaxy Entertainment and Melco Resorts have 30 days to go back to full business, Reuters reported.

While casinos have been given the green light to open their doors, business is likely to be limited because of the city’s stringent controls on visitor entry and the suspension of ferry services from Hong Kong, according to executives cited by Reuters.

The Novel Coronavirus Response and Coordination Centre Coordinator, Dr. Leong Iek Hou, said Friday that the Health Bureau is preparing epidemic prevention guidelines for businesses that will be resuming operations this week, with recommendations that people should be required to submit a health statement and forbidden to enter if they show symptoms of fever and cough.

Authorities will also suggest gaming operators that the number of employees be at least 50 percent lower than before the suspension.

The authorities are also developing an online app where the health declaration can be filled, and although private entities will not be mandated to use this program or imposed the health declaration, Dr. Leong indicated private entities could use it as a reference.

Companies and entities that resume work will also have to follow strict sanitary protection measures, including the need to wear masks, strengthen disinfection works public places, and better indoor ventilation.

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