Dennis Uy shelves Clark casino project
As the prolonged pandemic continues to bludgeon the tourism and gaming industry, Davaoeno businessman Dennis Uy suspended the development of his integrated resort and casino project in Clark, Pampanga, to focus efforts and resources on the group’s flagship casino project in Mactan, Cebu.
State-run Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (Pagcor) has approved the request of Clark Grand Leisure Corp. (CGLC), a subsidiary of Uy-controlled PH Resorts Group Holdings Inc (PHR), to voluntarily suspend its provisional casino license for its project in Clark Global City.
“CGLC sought the voluntary suspension of its license due to some lingering uncertainties surrounding the casino gaming industry especially with more competition in the Clark, Pampanga, location,” PHR disclosed to the Philippine Stock Exchange on Wednesday.
“The voluntary suspension also allows PHR to ramp up and focus all efforts for the construction and development of its flagship integrated resort and casino project, the Emerald Bay Resort and Casino, located in Mactan, Cebu,” the disclosure added.
The lifting of the voluntary suspension in the future will be subject to the approval of the Pagcor board.
As its financial projections were mainly centered on Emerald Bay, the company said this suspension of CGLC’s license would have “little to no impact on the business of PHR.”
CGLC was required by Pagcor to invest at least $200 million in the integrated casino-resort project in Clark, provided that 40 percent would be spent within two years after the issuance of the provisional license, subject to any extension that Pagcor may grant at its discretion.
CGLC’s provisional license was issued by Pagcor in 2018, making it one of five licensees permitted to develop and operate an integrated resort and casino in Clark Freeport Zone. A regular casino gaming license was supposed to be issued upon the completion—and Pagcor’s approval—of a final report on project construction.
The Clark provisional license, as well as any regular license issued to replace it, will expire on July 11, 2033, subject to renewal conditions. The project is part of PHR’s “The Base” development, located in a 4.4-hectare property in Clark Global City.
Earlier, PHR announced that the soft opening of flagship project, Emerald Bay in Mactan, would be moved to March 2022, while completion of the first phase was pushed back to the third quarter of next year.
Before the coronavirus pandemic outbreak, PHR was targeting the soft opening to happen by the end of this year while the first phase of development was to be completed by the second quarter of 2022.
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