Macau casino revenue in 2012 rose to $38 billion


Macau casino revenue climbed 13.5 percent last year to a record $38 billion, as the Asian gambling hub held on to its position as the world's biggest gambling market.

Gross revenue from Macau's 35 casinos also hit a monthly record in December, rising 20 percent to 28.2 billion Macau patacas ($3.5 billion). The data was posted on the gaming regulator's website on Wednesday.

But gambling revenue growth eased off in 2012 from the year before, when it rocketed 42 percent, as China's economy slowed. Mainland Chinese gamblers account for the bulk of visitors to Macau, a former Portuguese colony that returned to Chinese control in 1999. It's the only place in China where casino gambling is legal.

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