KPMG full smoking ban report released

Japan Tobacco Inc. Products As Shares Plunge on $5 Billion Reynolds Asset Deal

The KPMG report that earlier this year suggested that a full smoking ban in casinos would negatively impact GDP and compromise social welfare has been officially released in full. The report, entitled “Impact of Proposed Changes in Smoking Policy in Casinos in Macau,” has projected a 16 percent reduction in GDP and a 20 percent drop in total fiscal receipts if the smoking ban is enacted.
The international audit firm study was commissioned by the six gaming operators in Macau, who in turn presented the basic findings to the Second Standing Committee of the Legislative Assembly earlier this month.
It suggests that the economic impact of a full smoking ban could directly affect  gaming, accommodation, food and beverage, and transportation industries. Meanwhile, the report also proposes that the indirect impacts could extend to the expenditure of goods and services being diverted outside of Macau, along with a reduction in the income for employees in the SAR.
According to those responsible for the report, 34,000 surveys were conducted between May 19 and June 3, 2015, interviewing respondents who were directly employed by the six gaming operators, in order to investigate their views on the retention of smoking lounges.
The investigators surveyed around 40 percent of all casino employees, and found that 66 percent either supported the retention of smoking lounges or outright opposed the ban. Those surveyed consisted of both gaming staff (81 percent) and non-gaming staff (19 percent). The respondents also included smokers (23 percent) and non-smokers (77 percent).
A similar survey of casino customers revealed parallel findings, with 71 percent of all customers surveyed speaking in favor of retaining lounges or opposing the ban.
Furthermore, 32 percent of surveyed VIP customers revealed that they would consider travelling elsewhere for their gaming needs if the smoking ban was enacted. Of that proportion the most popular destinations were Singapore (32 percent), South Korea (26 percent), and the Philippines (19 percent).
The KPMG report also projected that, based on the information gathered in consumer surveys, a full smoking ban would reduce the average frequency of visits per year of VIP customers by 1.15 times, and the average length of stay per trip would be reduced by 0.56 days.
The spending behavior of mass customers would also be expected to change. Staff reporter

Categories Macau