Macau Regulator Denies Allegations That Casino Workers Will Face Wage Cuts And Dismissals After Tendering Process Ends

Macau Regulator Denies Allegations That Casino Workers Will Face Wage Cuts And Dismissals After Tendering Process Ends

For the last few months, uncertainty has set upon casino workers in Macau, with reports hinting many could end up losing their jobs after the ongoing tendering process concludes. However, in a new statement, the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau (DICJ) denied allegations that workers in the sector will face huge wage cuts or compulsory redundancy once the process comes to an end.

In a written inquiry to the city’s regulator, legislator Leong Sun Iok indicated that the possible prospect of being out of a job weighed on many casino workers, and asked whether the government had put in place a mechanism to prevent it from turning into a reality.

Leong Sun Iok

In its reply, the DICJ said that they had been monitoring the gaming industry closely to make sure that they act on their commitments to employment. It also reiterated that local employees are always given priority in the domestic job market, as reported by Macau Business.

The mounting speculation has also led the gaming regulator to issue a public statement where it described the rumors as “groundless.” “The SAR Government is always committed to the safeguarding of gaming employees’ legal employment rights,” the statement read.

Cloee Chao

Cloee Chao, President of the New Macau Gaming Staff Rights Association, previously told Macau News Agency that the group suspected that the existing casino operators are delaying the downsizing of their manpower until they receive an extension to their gaming concessions.

She estimated that half of the industry’s workforce could face the prospect of sacking. “The reason why we haven’t seen any significant layoffs is that gaming companies are tendering for casino licenses. I hope that the government will add additional regulations and conditions to future gaming contracts so that gaming companies will not dismiss their employees,” she said.

Seven companies have submitted their tenders for Macau’s six gaming concessions. The list of firms vying for the 10-year licenses includes the city’s six current operators –Wynn Macau, Sands China, MGM China, SJM Holdings, Galaxy Entertainment and Melco Resorts– and a seventh company, GMM Limited, part of the Genting Group.

Macau’s government launched the public tender process in July, with up to six concessions to run starting next January. Authorities have not said when the new licensees will be announced, with negotiations expected to last weeks. However, analysts cited by Reuters believe the six winners could be announced by the end of November or early December.