The Gongbei border gate and Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge (HZMB) have returned to their normal operating hours over the weekends after Macau launches a “health system code” which requires visitors to provide information about possible symptoms, travel history and contact tracing relative to the COVID-19 virus.
Last January, the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge (HZMB) and the border gate reduced their operating hours as precautionary measures and, over the weekends, the border gate has been open from 6am to 1am, while the HZMB from 8am to 10pm daily.
To further strengthen the monitoring of everyone entering the state, all visitors will be marked in colour codes. Green is for those not at risk of contracting the virus and are allowed to enter; yellow for those with symptoms like cough, fever and shortness of breath, will be allowed to enter but will have to undergo self-checking and health management; red is for those who are not allowed to enter the state at all.
The COVID-19, which originated from Wuhan, China, hit the Macau gaming industry during the peak holiday season of the Lunar New Year.
Labor Day week, which is one of the busiest for Macau, saw only 600 visitors in the first two days of the week compared to last year’s 437,000 visitors. Last March, the government issued MOP 3,000 e-vouchers for Macau residents to be used from 01 May to 31 July 2020 in an effort to stimulate the state’s economy affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Macau has about 41 casinos in its territory with a gross revenue of about USD $36 billion from gaming and gambling. Macau owns some of the largest multinational casino resorts, the largest being Sands Macau which is owned by Las Vegas Sands. Venetian Macau, patterned after Las Vegas Venetian, boasts of 640 gaming tables and 1,760 slot machines.
At present, online casinos are not permitted in Macau as a Special Administrative Region of Mainland China.
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