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Vegas Companies Eye Singapore Opportunity

26 March 2004

SINGAPORE – As reported by the Singapore Business Time: "The gambling moguls of Las Vegas know the value of maintaining a poker face, but there was no doubt yesterday about their keen interest in Singapore's plans for a possible casino in a proposed new 500-hectare resort at Sentosa Cove.

"The development department of MGM Mirage is already examining the potential, while Robert Stewart, a senior vice-president for corporate communications at Caesars Entertainment, the world's biggest casino corporation, told BT yesterday that it is a 'significant opportunity'.

"Industry insider Paul Dworin, publisher of Global Gaming Business magazine of Las Vegas, said: 'The news has been on all the gaming industry wires and there's nobody who's not interested in it.'

"…At MGM, which has four leading casinos in the Las Vegas Strip and over 60 per cent of its upscale gambling, the senior vice-president of public affairs, Alan Feldman, told BT: 'Our monitoring staff is already reviewing the opportunities and whether it's worth throwing our hat in the ring.'

"But he stressed that the Singapore government's regulations would be the final arbiter of what happens.

"In what at first seems a contradiction, the Vegas-based industry wants strict rather than lax regulations, and tight enforcement.

"…At Caesars, Mr Stewart said his firm had bid unsuccessful in Macau but was still interested in the former Portuguese colony, as well as Thailand and Japan. He added: 'We think Singapore would represent a significant opportunity. But it will depend on the details of the regulations the government imposes.'…"

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