A rash of kidnappings of guests has caused the hotels and gambling destinations to purchase the policies.
In a trend that is being blamed on the rough economic struggles being faced on the Chinese mainland, the hotels and casinos of Macau are experiencing a wave of guest abductions that are now making insurance news as these establishments buy policies to cover themselves.
The kidnappings of wealthy guests are occurring over the matter of unpaid gambling debts.
With the falling numbers of people who head to the Chinese Special Administrative Region which is currently the biggest gambling center in the world, the latest insurance news suggests that the risk of kidnapping has been notably rising. China’s slowing economy has been, in part, responsible for accelerating this trend, as revenues droop for moneylenders that are greatly reliant on tourism from the mainland. Since Beijing has restricted the amount of cash that mainlanders are legally allowed to bring with them to Macau, it has meant that high stakes gamblers have found themselves turning to loan sharks to obtain the cash that they need.
The trend in this insurance news has proven to be an extremely dangerous one when unlucky in cards and dice.
The majority of the abductions are occurring right out of the guest rooms and the hotels are now fearful of lawsuits from the victims as well as their families. For that reason, they are now reaching out to insurance companies to purchase policies that will help them to be able to mitigate the risk of losses associated with legal liability and crisis responders.
According to reports from the Macau government, by the end of the first half of 2015, there had already been up to 170 people who had been held against their will. During that span of 6 months, the figure from the same time period in 2014 had more than doubled. Moreover, those statistics represent only the cases that had been reported to the authorities. According to experts, the actual total of kidnappings is likely considerably higher.
According to an insurance news statement released by Ashley Coles, a Jardine Lloyd Thompson assistant director of credit, political and security risks, the result of this trend is an overall sense of fear within the region. “Word of mouth can lead to a trend of an interest in the policy, security and the protection,” he said, adding that “All the major casino and hotel chains will have looked into this.”