Genting win casino licence

The Singapore government announced today that they have chosen Genting Bhd to operate its second casino resort. Genting’s proposal was chosen above multi-billion-dollar bids from Eighth Wonder and Kerzner.

The resort will built be on a 49-hectare site on the island of Sentosa, with the project costing in the region of $3.1 billion. It is expected to be open by early 2010.

Genting’s proposal, strengthened by their tie-up with theme park giant Universal Studios, seemed to sway favour with the government’s aim to build a resort that was family-friendly and increased general tourist visits.

"The proposal reflects our vision for the Sentosa Integrated Resort -- a large-scale family resort that boasts world-class family leisure attractions," Singapore's Deputy Prime Minister S. Jayakumar told a press conference.

Genting also plan to build an eight-hectare marine park where visitors can swim amongst over 200 varieties of fishes including whale sharks and will also use Universal’s movie-themed roller-coasters.

In May, Las Vegas Sands was granted Singapore’s first casino licence and the government believe that the two resorts combined can help them to achieve their goal of doubling tourist numbers by 2015, spurred on by the success of neighbouring Macau.

"We believe these two integrated resorts will bring us closer to the 2015 tourism target," Singapore Minister of Trade and Industry Lim Hng Kiang said.

The total investment of both resorts is set to be around the $7 billion mark, with 30,000 jobs created and a projected boost of 0.3 to 0.5 percent to the economy in 2010.

"The Singapore economy will be the big winner," said Citigroup analyst Chua Hak Bin.

Casino revenues in Asia will reach $13 billion this year, fuelled by the overwhelming success of Macau, which many other Asian countries want to replicate for themselves. This led to Singapore ditching their ban on casinos and left other countries looking on admirably. As a result, Japan and South Korea are currently rethinking their gambling laws.

Editor, - 2006-12-08 11:11:16

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