MGM China shares rise on land deal for new Macau casino

MGM Grand in Macau
Image caption Casino operators have been keen to expand their presence in Macau

Shares of MGM China have risen after the firm finalised a land deal in Macau to build a new casino on the territory's Cotai strip.

The strip has been one of the fastest developing destinations in Macau and several of the firm's rivals have opened new casinos there.

MGM said it plans to build a casino gaming resort on the strip, featuring 1,600 rooms and 500 gaming tables.

Its shares rose 5% to HK$14.42 in Hong Kong.

"The board believes that our future development of the Cotai land will offer compelling growth opportunities in the future," the firm said in a statement to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.

It said it had made an initial payment of 450m patacas ($56m; £35m) to the Macau government to acquire the land for the project.

Macau is the only place in China where gambling is allowed, and it has gone on to become the world's biggest gambling market.

Driven by the success, casino operators have expanded their presence in the territory in a bid to attract more consumers.

Earlier this year, Wynn Macau, the Chinese arm of Wynn Resorts, received an approval from the government to start construction of its new casino on the Cotai strip.

Two other casino operators, Las Vegas Sands and Galaxy Entertainment, have also opened new projects there.

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