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Macau is seeing the return of junket agents, but in a different form. They are now called ‘Program Players’ and are being given special rooms to play in with their ‘friends.’ This allows the casinos to avoid the regulations and obligations that come with dealing with official junket operators. The purpose of these agents is to do things that the casinos are not allowed to do, like promoting in areas where gambling marketing is illegal and moving money out of jurisdictions with strict controls. By not being classified as junket operators, they have more freedom and are not tied to any specific casino. The mass market is expected to recover and surpass 2019 levels, while the VIP market may soften once mainland Chinese travelers are able to visit other regional destinations again.

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