China 2.0

How China's Corrupt Are Making Macau Rich

Ahead of the anniversary of Macau passing under Beijing's control, and a delicate visit from Xi Jinping, a closer look at the troubling formula of the former Portuguese colony.

MACAU — President Xi Jinping's visit to Macao to mark the 15th anniversary of the former Portuguese colony returning to Chinese sovereignty won't be any kind of victory lap. China's leader is worried about the growing financial crime in the region, where it is estimated that $202 billion is recycled through the peninsula's casinos every year.

This immense sum comes from the People's Republic as well. Party officials and directors of public companies spend bribes they accumulate during the year at the gaming tables and sauna-brothels in Macau's many hotels, while the rest is used to buy real estate, companies and government bonds in the West.

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