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Travel & Leisure

Macao casinos' reopening boost blunted by junket crackdown

Recovery in gaming pushes up revenue but high rollers stay away

Casino Lisboa in Macao is operated by SJM Holdings. First-quarter gaming revenue in the city got a boost from China's reopening, but uncertainties linger.    © Reuters

HONG KONG -- Macao casinos logged a strong first quarter following China's COVID reopening, but a crackdown on junkets is keeping high rollers away, sowing doubts over how quickly the gambling hub can return to pre-pandemic revenue levels.

All six operators recorded positive earnings before interest, taxation, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) in the three months ending March, with Sands China leading at $398 million, according to company disclosures.

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