Further details have emerged of forthcoming changes to Macao’s gaming industry, after lawmaker Andrew Chan Chak Mo said that it will not be necessary for everyone who is involved in the junket business to comply with the legal obligation of disclosing information to the government, but only certain individuals or entities.
Chan chairs the Legislative Assembly’s Second Standing Committee which is reviewing a bill regulating the city’s junket operators – officially known as gaming promoters.
Speaking after yesterday’s closed-door meeting reviewing the bill, Chan quoted the committee members as saying that the disclosure obligation proposed in the previous version of the bill “gave too much power to the government” as it required everyone in the junket business to abide by the official disclosure obligation.
Secretary for Economy and Finance Lei Wai Nong and other government officials attended yesterday’s meeting.
According to Chan, the latest version of the bill proposes that certain entities such as the gaming concession companies, junkets, and related management companies, would be deemed ineligible if they do not comply with the disclosure obligation during their eligibility assessment, in which the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau would require such individuals and entities to provide certain documents, information or evidence necessary to prove their eligibility.
The bill also proposes that employment contracts terminated due to a court dissolution order, the imposition of additional penalties or the imposition of administrative penalties will be considered unreasonable dismissals, according to the latest version of the bill.
Chan quoted some committee members as pointing out that the government should order a precautionary suspension in any case where the entity involved would cause serious or irreparable damage to the public interest and where the entity would be likely to destroy evidence.
Chan quoted the government as saying that the government would add an article proposing that staff dismissals for such reasons would also be considered unreasonable.
Chan said that his committee has finished its article-by-article review of the bill, and the committee and the government’s legal advisors will hold technical meetings to further discuss the bill’s wording, adding that he expected the bill to be presented to the Legislative Assembly for its final article-by-article debate and vote during a plenary session in the middle of November, following the summer recess that begins on 1 September.
Chan quoted the government officials as saying that the government would consider standardising the effective date of the bill, as the bill would only come into force one day after the effective date of the agreement signed between the government and the future gaming concessionaires resulting from the current tender for up to six gaming concessions, The Macau Post Daily reported.