Gambling Rate Among Macau Locals Higher in 2016May 31, 2017 12:49 pm
While Macau’s casino industry is big business and generates huge amounts of revenue each year for the Chinese government, the country’s authorities are also keen to ensure that its gambling market is not negatively impacting the lives of those citizens residing on the island resorts. As a result, the Macau Social Welfare Bureau recently commissioned an examination on the gambling habits of Macanese people, with the Study of Commercial Gaming at the University of Macau subsequently concluding that in 2016 the participation rate among locals had risen by 2% to 51.5% of the city’s residents, compared to the same figure in 2013.
Despite the increase, however, the statistic is still significantly lower than the 68% of locals who admitted taking part in some form of gambling back in 2003. Furthermore, there is nothing in the study to indicate that Macau’s residents are suffering a disproportionate level of gambling addiction, either, with just 2.5% of the 2,000 people surveyed responding in a way that points towards them being classed as “probable disordered gamblers.”
Around 650,000 people live in Macau, which would suggest around 3,250 residents currently suffering from a gambling addiction. While a small amount, the study still points out that only 43% of respondents could actually give a fairly accurate description of what “problem gambling” or having “gambling disorder” actually meant. As the study subsequently Concludes:
“In other words, there is still room for people to increase their awareness and understanding of Gambling Disorder. Hence, it is suggested to strengthen the public education on Gambling Disorder and its related issues so as to reduce the personal and social cost produced by Gambling Disorder.”
In the meantime, Macau’s casino revenue may have grown over the past nine months, but the $28 billion the market generated last year was still down by more than a third versus the $45 billion collected in 2013 prior to the launch of the government’s anti-corruption campaign.