The Current State of Southeast Asia’s Casino Sector
Gambling is by far one of the most popular leisurely activities worldwide. Due to the recent impact of Coronavirus, many casinos and gambling firms have taken a serious financial hit from the epidemic. Most businesses have suffered the same problem, but industries such as tourism, hospitality, retail, and gambling have all faced a major setback due to restrictions put in place by governments around the world. Today we will examine the real impact of the virus on Southeast Asia’s prominent gambling sector.
The impact of worldwide lockdowns is unprecedented, previously mentioned sectors have suffered a severe knockback from the virus. The gambling industry is in a unique position compared to other business sectors. Before the epidemic, the Southeast Asian casino market was growing at an extraordinary rate, this aligns with the general increase in the demand taking place around the world.
Online casinos have taken the place of land-based firms since the beginning of the pandemic; the increased user activity has showcased the overall popularity of casinos around the world as well as South-East Asia. The setback of Coronavirus has led to the prioritization of online revenue streams, as they become essential for the future success of casinos all around the world.
Online casinos allow players to experience all their favorite games in a virtual setting. Southeastern Asian customers now have the opportunity to explore a new market and play casino games such as baccarat, slot machines, poker, and blackjack. Recent travel bans have affected the tourism business, which is financially linked to gambling markets. Both of these industries are estimated to see a large decline in annual revenue, potentially endangering their survivability. Online casinos have become a glimmer of hope for casinos and gambling firms as they try to sustain themselves in this harsh economic climate.
Macau, Asia’s Very Own Las Vegas
Casinos have been popping up all over Southeast Asia. Vietnam, Cambodia, South Korea, and parts of the Philippines have all been subject to an increased gambling presence since the turn of the century. The city of Macau in South-East China has blown all the over nations out of the water. It is a special administrative region of China and operates under different governing and economic systems from the mainland. The major difference being gambling is fully legalized in Macau. This cannot be said for the rest of the country.
According to a report conducted by Ella McDonald on behalf of Legal Gambling and the Law, due to the rapid growth of the gambling industry, 80% of Macau’s’ governmental revenue comes from casino taxes. Its prominence in the Asian economy has led to Southeast Asia and Macau, in particular, being labeled as the gambling capital of the world, able to rival the iconic Las Vegas.
Macau’s casinos have flopped, despite residing in one of the most densely populated city on the planet, with a population of 650,000 and an area of 12.7 square miles. 2019 proved to be Macau’s most successful year thus far. Their total gross gaming revenues were $24 billion, which is 4x more than Las Vegas. 2020 and the impact of Coronavirus has put a stop to last years record numbers, and many firms now find themselves under threat. As previously mentioned, the surge in online casino usage has given the industry a new lease of life.
The South Eastern Gambling Markets’ Bright Future
Due to the recent easing of travel bans and restrictions, the end of 2020 is looking much more sustainable for casinos and gambling firms. With the explosive popularity of online casinos in South East Asia, predictions have hinted at a potential boom in the local casino market as well as the continued success of online casinos.
Some of the largest sporting events in the world have been canceled due to the virus. This included the Tokyo Olympics, which was supposed to have taken place this year, and will now take place in 2021. As well as this the prospect of spectator sports returning such as Football, Basketball, and many others means that punters have several sporting events to look forward and this could lead to a large surge of new players as they welcome the return of spectator events.
Plenty of South Eastern Asian nations have struggled due to the restrictions they have been forced to pursue because of the virus. Economic frailties have come to the forefront, and the casino market is now an essential asset to nations across South East Asia. They now depend on the success of casino markets as well as other sectors such as tourism and hospitality to revitalize their struggling economies.