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Getting to the Starting Line - Singapore’s Journey & Beyond 24 November 2011 . Scope of Sharing. Introduction to Casino Regulatory Authority (CRA) Singapore’s Integrated Resorts – Why? CRA’s Journey Singapore Casinos’ Opening & Learning Points for CRA Q&A .
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Getting to the Starting Line -Singapore’s Journey & Beyond24 November 2011
Scope of Sharing • Introduction to Casino Regulatory Authority (CRA) • Singapore’s Integrated Resorts – Why? • CRA’s Journey • Singapore Casinos’ Opening & Learning Points for CRA • Q&A
Casino Regulatory Authority • CRA - Statutory Board under Ministry of Home Affairs • Governed by statutes • Allows funding by the industry (casino licence fees) • Provides flexibility • in dealing with industry operators, reacting to ground situations • in exercising operating and administrative authority as an independent body
CRA’s Mission 1 2 Ensure that the management & operation of the casinos remain free from criminal influence or exploitation; Ensure that gaming in the casinos is conducted honestly 3 Contain & control the potential of the casinos to cause harm to minors, vulnerable persons & society at large.
Patrons & others e.g. Strict penalties against cheating,Prevention of Money Laundering controls Electronic gaming machinemanufacturers/suppliers (Approval) Testing labs (Recognition) Business dealings with casinos Other vendors/suppliers (Approval of contracts) Junket promoters (Licensing) Operators (Licensing) Main shareholders (Approval) Special employees (Licensing) Casino Scope of Regulation To prevent criminal infiltration and ensure honest gaming
Scope of Regulation Social Safeguards: to contain and control the potential of a casino to cause harm to minors, vulnerable persons & society at large • Limiting entry access • Entry levy • Exclusion orders (CP EO, NCPG EO, CRA EO) • No minors (<21 years old) • Forfeiture of winnings • Credit restrictions • Advertising restrictions • No ATMs in casinos • Voluntary loss limit system • Responsible gambling • measures
CRA Board • Chairman Mr. Richard Magnus and 15 members • Advises and provides strategic guidance to the management of CRA to meet its objectives • Board meets quarterly • Policy and operational issues scrutinised • Strategic directions established • Decisions on major issues tabled to Board for approval • Establish sound corporate governance
History of Gaming (Singapore) • Time Period • 1830s and rest of 19th century: Widespread gaming in Singapore • 1929 : Restricted legal outlet at Singapore Turf Club • 1950s and 1960s: Rampant Illegal Gaming and Substantive Changes to Gaming Laws • 1968: Legalisation of Lotteries and Establishment of Singapore Pools
History of Gaming (Singapore) • Gaming in the 21st Century: By and large prohibited, except where exemptions or permits were sought • Betting Act, Betting and Sweepstake Duties Act, Common Gaming Houses Act, • Lottery (4-digit, Toto, Singapore Sweep, football betting) allowed • considered “leisure activities” • 2010: Opening of the two Integrated Resorts (IRs) with casinos: • Legalise gambling (Approved games) in casinos
Proposals for Casinos – Early Stages • Prior reasons for proposal of casinos (Timeline)
Why Integrated Resorts for Singapore • Changing Circumstances • Losing ground in tourism. • No tourism infrastructure projects that are crowd pullers. • Cities around the world are reinventing themselves • New York, Paris, Shanghai, Hong Kong, etc • Japan, S Korea, India, Thailand Taiwan, Philippines – may legalise / liberalise casino gaming
Why Integrated Resorts for Singapore • Boost Singapore’s attractiveness as a tourist destination • Significant Economic Benefits for Singapore • Investments • Economic Spin Offs • Tourism receipts • Jobs
The IRs will have all kinds of amenities – hotels, restaurants, shopping, convention space, even theatres, museums and theme parks. They attract hundreds of thousands of visitors per year. The great majority will not be there to gamble. But within this large development and slew of activities, there is one small but essential part which offers gaming and which helps make the entire project financially viable. As a result, there is no need for government grants or subsidies. The IRs will change our downtown skyline and transform Sentosa into a truly high-quality resort destination. They will make Singapore a centre for tourism, business and conventions... There will be spin-offs to the rest of the economy. --- Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong April 2005 Why Integrated Resorts for Singapore
Significant Economic Benefits of the IR 10,000 direct jobs per IR (when 100% open) 20,000 US$10b Investment by both IRs
Assessment • Two-stage Process • Request for Concept (or RFC) • process whereby interested bidders presented concept proposals for the Integrated Resorts • Not binding offers • 80+ concepts presented – YES! • Request for Proposals (or RFP) • Tender document containing rules, guidelines, conditions etc, under which Integrated Resorts and casinos will be built
RFP • Spelled out desired outcomes of IR • Iconic development, unique and differentiated • Compelling mix of attractions, entertainment, MICE facilities, hotel, retail, F&B • Bring in strong affiliates with strong credentials • Branding, programming, design, content, etc. • Enhance Singapore’s image/reputation as dynamic tourist destination • Attract foreign visitors to casino; keep resident participation small proportion • Locked in key provisions; later in Casino Control Act
RFP • RFP - Key Provisions for Casino Gaming • Casino concession – 30 years • Remain suitable throughout concession period • Casino tax • 15% GGR • 5% GGR for premium players • Issuance of casino licence • 50% Development Investment has been paid • 50% of proposed gross floor area completed
RFP • RFP - Key Provisions for Casino Gaming • Allowed for 2 casino licences • Review of casino licence every 3 years • Non-transferable casino licence • Maximum gaming area – 15,000 sqm • Casino regulations and licence fees • Security, law and order requirements • Social safeguards
Resorts World at Sentosa (RWS) Marina Bay Sands (MBS) Marina Bay Sands(MBS)
Two Integrated Resorts Established • Two Integrated Resorts with casinos allowed • Tourist-directed • Integrated Resort Concept • Casinos - but one of many amenities
Extensive Preparations • Casino Control Act has five main areas • Constitution of the CRA • Licensing Regimes • Casino Operations • Casino Tax • Social Safeguards • From 2008 onwards, promulgated the necessary subsidiary legislation to support the Casino Control Act • 15 Casino Control Regulations • Over 30 sets of game rules • 7 technical standards • 8 technical notices
Extensive Preparations • 6 Feb 2010 - awarded casino licence to Resorts World Sentosa • 26 Apr 2010 - awarded casino licence to Marina Bay Sands • Lead-up to casino openings - • issued more than 6500 Special Employee Licences • approved more than: • 2600 Electronic Gaming Machines, • 40 types of Gaming equipment, • 24 Gaming Machine manufacturers & suppliers, • 6 Singapore Recognised Testing Laboratores
Extensive Preparations • 1) Learning from International Counterparts • Extensive study visits (US, Australia, Macau, UK) • Requests for information • Training attachments • Training Symposiums • G2E • Participation in overseas regulatory fora • International Association of Gaming Regulators (IAGR) • Australasian Casino and Gaming Regulators (ACGR)
Extensive Preparations • 2) Extensive research by CRA staff • Active research of multi-jurisdictional practices, especially best practices • Deep probing – rationale, mistakes made, what could have been done better if you had the chance to do it all over again.
Extensive Preparations • 3) Leveraging on Expertise • Hiring specialists, e.g. probity investigations • Cooperation with Regulators and local Law Enforcement Agencies (LEAs) • Regulator-to-regulator cooperation • Attachment of two Queensland inspectors to CRA during opening period • Bi-annual CRA-CID Training Symposiums - invited speakers and participants from reference regulators (law enforcement and regulation units) • 4) Active Engagement of Industry and Operators • CRA’s Technology Forum • Regular consultations and operator meetings
Learning Points • 1) CRA as a Statutory Board under Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) • role to keep crime out of casinos closely tied to enforcement (thus our affiliation with law and order/ security-related Home Ministry) • ready pool of officers with relevant expertise from the different divisions and departments under the purview of the Home Ministry • 2) CRA’s firm regulatory stance - compliance before commerce • firm but fair • benchmarked against best practices of foreign jurisdictions • casino operator has primary responsibility to comply
Learning Points • 3) Close & early engagement with casino operator is crucial • e.g. approval of gaming equipment, licensing of special employees • prioritisation of operator needs • close coordination of operators’ timelines with CRA’s • setting of regulator expectations
Learning Points • 4) Training of CRA inspectors & good internal preparations are key • no major surprises • aggressively sent our officers overseas to learn • CRA developed comprehensive checklist to guide pre-opening prep • table-top exercise for CRA management • table-top exercise, mock casino, test session for operator
Learning Points • 5) Engagement of specialist expertise/advice complemented CRA’s lack of practical experience • (e.g. Australian ex-regulators, SGG consultants) • available for on-the-spot consulting • walked through opening 7 days with CRA for 1st casino opening • By 2nd casino opening, CRA was able to see it through on its own
Learning Points • 6) Useful to have CRA team on-site to closely monitor opening period • CRA Mgt were on-site for first 7 days • daily meetings with CE of the casino operators & mgt • point out deficiencies so that they could remedy quickly • respond to & clarify operators’ operational queries • show operators that CRA is on top of situation & closely monitoring • 7) Good coordination between CRA & Police • investigations into offences, crowd management • RWS’ opening on 14 Feb 2010, the first day of CNY, saw • large crowds turning up at the casino. • CRA reacted swiftly with SPF & worked with RWS to devise a more effective crowd management system.
Learning Points • 8) Useful to have technical expertise on-site • (e.g. gaming manufacturers, systems engineers) • - allowed for fast response • - e.g. during the opening week, the volume of activity was so heavy that there was a shortage of slots and electronics table game terminals to meet patron demand. Many patrons had actually queued to play, which is an uncommon sight during casino openings. • - This called for minimum recovery time in terms of resolving technical glitches and having the technical expertise from the manufacturers onsite effectively alleviated the pressure experienced during the opening.
Learning Points • 9) Important to internally review what CRA did right, could improve - CRA conducted internal after action review, by Division & across whole of CRA • 10) Important to firmly place onus on casino operator to comply with regulatory requirements • strong message reiterated to operators’ mgt • highlighting observations to keep operators on its toes & in compliance mode (e.g. dealers forgetting to announce closing of bets)
Learning Points • 11) Be firm but fair • CRA exercised flexibility in dealing with technical breaches, such as software faults, so long as gaming integrity is preserved • expected teething issues, got operator to remedy (provided not intentional or willful)
Beyond Opening….. Clarifying our regulatory stance • Continuous review and strengthening of the regime – moving towards a more outcome based approach • Forging strategic partnerships within and outside of Singapore – deepening of our expertise – keep apace with rapid industry developments (particularly Asia) • Enhancing its organisational capabilities. – develop new capabilities, grow existing capabilities • Encourage operators to engage regulators, take ownership and do their part as responsible operators
Economic/Tourism Security & Law Enforcement Tax/Finance SPF CNB Social safeguards Forging Partnerships
2) International Networks United States 1) Referenced Jurisdictions Australasia Casino & Gaming Regulators Nevada Gaming Control Board Singapore 3) Local partnerships Australia New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement Forging Partnerships
IAGR 2012 • Singapore hosts IAGR 2012 • Date: 21-24 October 2012 • Venue: Pan Pacific Hotel • Visit www.iagr.org for more information