Market announcement this morning from Reef Casino:
QLD Government’s announcement regarding “Global Tourism Hubs”
We refer to the Queensland Government’s recent policy announcement regarding possible “global tourism hubs” which “focusses on tourism as a primary driver with gaming as a second” specifically in Cairns and the Gold Coast.
Given the size of Cairns with a population of approximately 150,000 people, it is our view that a second casino in Cairns would not be commercially and economically viable. However, as previously stated, it is the Trust’s intention to continue to invest in its main asset, the Reef Hotel Casino in Cairns. The Trust also continues to consider any further investment opportunity to expand its operations.
Following the Queensland Government’s recent announcement, the Trust will continue to work with the Government to further explore opportunities to expand the Reef Hotel Casino in Cairns on state-owned land in the Cairns City Port precinct identified by the Government which is located across from, and adjacent to, the Reef Hotel Casino so as to create a larger integrated resort encompassing the current Reef Hotel Casino complex and including public amenities.
The Trust has reinvested more than $55 million in the Reef Hotel Casino since its original investment of some $210 million in 1996. The Reef Hotel Casino continues to be the biggest single site employer in Cairns providing stable employment for approximately 500 Cairns residents.
Dear Sirs? Perhaps some in the Market Announcements Office at ASX to which it is addressed are not Sirs but I digress. They are almost certainly correct that Cairns City would not be able to sustain two casinos. Despite their promotion as tourism assets Australian casinos remain heavily dependant on pokies.