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IGB: 2023 Predictions Around The Globe


17th February 2023

Asia: Alidad Tash, managing director, 2NT8

What are your hopes for the Asian gambling sector in 2023?

Recovery and getting back to 2019 levels, which would be easier for most jurisdictions except Macau. Anywhere else, they have a chance – Singapore can do it. Korea can do it, but Macau? Hell no.

What challenges will the Asian industry face in the coming year?

Inside Macau, battling Covid; there will be uncertainty until an equilibrium is reached. Outside Macau, the Chinese government’s stance on allowing people to travel there. We don’t know if or when China opens up, whether China will allow hardcore gamblers to travel to Manila.

Number two, you have to get your money there. There’s uncertainty whether high rollers will be allowed to travel abroad. This extends to Macau as well. That is a mystery to everybody. Will Singapore be able to survive without the Chinese high rollers, when China is making it more difficult to get there? That’s harder without the junkets.

What one thing could transform the industry?

I have no idea. I’ve given up being an optimist – let’s get back to running the race before we even think about optimising things. Within the context of 2023, it’s very difficult. Innovation is not what you need. When you’re starving, you don’t think about recipes; you just think of what you can get to eat.

On the other hand, Las Vegas is a miracle. They are breaking all-time records, though there are question marks there as to whether the recession will burst that bubble in 2023.

There’s so much uncertainty, with this potential reopening in China coming at the end of the year, that makes things really difficult to predict. If this was six months ago, I would have a good idea of what to predict, but there is so much uncertainty. They haven’t even announced things yet. They’re leaning towards opening but a big outbreak could derail everything.

Anchor 1 Fiction
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