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Casino Capitalism and Its Legitimacy Impact on the Politico-administrative State in Macau

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  • Sonny Lo

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Abstract

Casino capitalism has its dialectical tendencies in Macau. On the one hand, it stimulates economic growth, provides employment, and strengthens the post-colonial state in Macau during the period of economic boom. On the other hand, casino capitalism can widen the income gap between the rich and the poor, generate addictive gambling, and de-legitimize the post-colonial state in Macau during the global and regional economic downturn. The weaknesses of the politico-administrative state in Macau, including the absence of institutional checks and balances, the frail civil society and the relatively docile mass media, have magnified the negative impacts of casino capitalism on Macau. In response to the negative ramifications, the Macau government has taken measures to be more interventionist, to enhance social welfare, and to prepare contingency plans that would tackle the sudden bankruptcy of any casinos. The central government in Beijing also displays contradictory considerations when it deals with Macau’s casino development, supporting the casino industry while simultaneously encouraging the Macau government to diversify its economy. Overall, casino capitalism not only has contradictory impacts on the Macau city-state but also reveals the inherent contradictions of Beijing’s policy toward the territory’s over-dependence on the casino economy.

Suggested Citation

  • Sonny Lo, 2009. "Casino Capitalism and Its Legitimacy Impact on the Politico-administrative State in Macau," Journal of Current Chinese Affairs - China aktuell, Institute of Asian Studies, GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies, Hamburg, vol. 38(1), pages 19-47.
  • Handle: RePEc:gig:chaktu:v:38:y:2009:i:1:p:19-47
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    File URL: http://hup.sub.uni-hamburg.de/giga/jcca/article/view/12/12
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    Cited by:

    1. repec:eee:touman:v:36:y:2013:i:c:p:164-177 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Bingqin Li & Zhonglu Zeng, 2015. "Economic Structure, Social Risks and the Challenges to Social Policy in Macau, China," Asia and the Pacific Policy Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 2(2), pages 383-398, May.
    3. Hendrik Tieben, 2009. "Urban Image Construction in Macau in the First Decade after the “Handover”, 1999-2008," Journal of Current Chinese Affairs - China aktuell, Institute of Asian Studies, GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies, Hamburg, vol. 38(1), pages 49-72.
    4. Metaxas, Theodore & Folinas, Sotiris, 2016. "Gambling Tourism and Economic Development: Some lessons from Macao," MPRA Paper 72397, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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    Keywords

    Capitalism; Legitimacy; State;

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