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Junket operators are protesting measures to ban them from giving credit

A legislative amendment would allow only casino operators to grant credit to punters – a system that junket operators say is impractical.

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The Legislative Assembly says it will reexamine a proposed bill that would ban junket operators from directly granting credit to punters in light of strong opposition from promoters, Asia Gaming Brief reports.

Chan Chak Mo, president of the second standing committee of the Legislative Assembly, confirmed that a letter of opposition from junket operators had prompted the committee to take a closer look at the legislative revision – which is expected to pass into law next month.

In the letter, the junket operators reportedly argued that their being allowed to grant credit to players was “effective,” contributed to the SAR’s gaming tax revenues, and should be maintained.

[See more: The rules for casinos and credit could soon tighten]

In its current state, the new law would closely regulate credit extension activities in casinos. Players seeking credit would only be able to apply to a concessionaire, a process that could take weeks. Junket operators – who are currently permitted to grant credit directly – would be punished with fines of up to 1.5 million patacas (US$185,000) for violating the rule.

According to Asia Gaming Brief, the government originally proposed the revision last December for reasons of “risk” and “healthy development of the gaming industry”.

Macao’s authorities have been cracking down on the junket sector in recent years, following the arrest of major industry figures such as Suncity’s Alvin Chau and Tak Chun Group’s Levo Chan.

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