MGM Resorts and The Sands Corporation headquartered in Las Vegas are in for a shock tonight. Marriott Headquarters in Washington will be for a rough awaken in the morning. The travel and tourism industry is in for a very tough time.
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Today, February 4 is the second time all 41 Casinos in the busiest gambling town in the world, Macau, China are shutting down for an unknown period of time. It’s bringing this Chinese territory to its knees, causing devastating losses for the travel and tourism industry not only in Macau but as far as Las Vegas. In 2018 Casinos closed for one day when Macau took a direct hit by a typhoon.
80 percent of government revenue in the former Portuguese colony is gambling. 35 million people visited Macau. Macau has only 631,000 residents.
Macau a partner and competitor with Las Vegas, has many U.S. run resorts and casinos, including the MGM and Sands Group.
The reason is the spread of coronavirus. It’s the Lunar New Year holiday and Macau already lost 80% of its holiday tourism business. It will now go down to 100% until Chief Executive Ho Iat-seng will allow the re-opening of Casinos. Two casino workers fell ill of the virus just on Tuesday.
“This is a difficult decision but we have to do it, for the health of our Macau residents,” he told reporters.
He said he would meet gaming industry representatives on Tuesday afternoon and announce precise timings soon after.
He indicated he may shut down some border checkpoints with mainland China, following HongKong. He called for residents to stay indoors.