Singapore state casinos to face more challenging times ahead. Prime Minister of Singapore, Lee Hsien Loong says international travel is unlikely to return to pre-COVID-19 levels until at least 2022. For the country’s two integrated resort casinos, Marina Bay Sands and Resorts World Sentosa that news would be hard to hear.
Lee has led the island city-state’s government since 2004, but 2020 has been a year unlike any other. And the prime minister doesn’t see a quick recovery on the horizon.
“Travel is not going to return to normal next year. Maybe in two years’ time,” Lee opined Thursday at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC). Participating APEC countries include Singapore, United States, China, Japan, South Korea, Australia, and Canada.
“You cannot just go back to the old rules where you buy a ticket and within a few hours you get on the plane,” Lee continued. The prime minister says governments will continue jockeying to protect their own people. “If I have more cases than you, you are afraid of me,” the leader declared. “Once you have that kind of relationship, it is very difficult to open up.”
Singapore forced its two integrated resorts (IR) to shut operations in early April. They were permitted to reopen July 1. The two massive multibillion-dollar complexes are struggling to keep their rooms filled and casino floors busy amid the ongoing pandemic.
The Singapore Tourism Board reports that in Q1 — the latest disclosed three-month period — tourism spending dropped 39 percent. International visitor arrivals were down more than 43 percent, and the hotel industry saw room revenue plummet 31 percent.
[image: Dirk Heseman]