Macau hopes to legalize cryptocurrencies after China lawsuit

Macau officials plan to change their financial laws to allow cryptocurrencies, a move that could open up a whole new market for poker players and players flocking to the former Portuguese colony.

By: Andrew Burnett

With mainland China supplying most of these customers, plans could see instant transactions for casino players, or even the table, in the future. Currently, players need to convert their Chinese RMB Currency in HK $ or Macau Patacas, known as MOP.

The mainland Chinese being seriously affected by the limits on what they can spend in Macau (hence the junkets where players are offered “ loans ”, and often the involvement of the Triad to enforce their reimbursement. ), recent tests of a Digital Yuan in China raised hopes of a other payment method.

If the RMB were to be legal tender in Macau, then the way is also open to the use of the digital RMB,Brokerage Bernstein recently stated.
They added: “” In the context of casinos, this would mean for example being able to buy tokens to play directly from the casino cage (or even a table) instantly using RMB (digital) without needing to convert to HKD. “

Although the Chinese government tightly controls digital version of Yuan, allowing “Increased government monitoring and control over money flows”, Bernstein says that “Mass and premium mass gaming could definitely benefit from the ease of cash flow.”

It would also allow for easier money transfer. [and] eliminates the need to use intermediaries (such as junkets, underground banks or pawn shops) ”, they concluded.

Managing Director of Macau Ho Iat Seng recently said: “We should keep pace with the mainland government … and start a feasibility study around the launch of digital RMB in Macau. Therefore, we need to add provisions in the relevant legislation to allow the introduction of digital currencies. “

This is still far see currently banned cryptocurrencies legalized in China or Macau, but this may be the first small step towards a truly international approach to crypto.


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Joseph Hedrick

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