The head of the Cabo Verde government has underlined that the stalemate in David Chow´s investment in the archipelago is ‘untenable’.
Prime Minister Ulisses Correia e Silva confirmed news reports that the Government sent a message to Chow’s Macau Legend Development company, demanding clarification of his investment intentions on a resort and casino in the islet of Santa Maria, in the country´s capital.
“The works have to be completed. There is an agreement, a contract, an established undertaking, there is a concession and we cannot continue with the current situation. The businessman, the investor, has already been contacted and we hope there is an answer so we can get out of this stalemate”, Correia said, according to the local press.
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Correia confirmed that the Chinese investor asked for multiple extensions to complete the project and that they were granted, particularly taking into account the pandemic and other situations, but that the Government is now waiting for a definitive answer regarding the continuity of the project.
The Government also issued a statement saying that it “has always had as its central objective to encourage and boost private investment”, which is why in 2017 it signed with Macau Legend an agreement with view to the implementation of the project, budgeted at around 250 millions of euros.
The project consisted of the requalification of the whole of Gamboa beach, as well as the construction and operation of a casino hotel, a marina and support infrastructure for sailing, a multipurpose conference centre, among other infrastructure.
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To date, a building with 08 floors and a connecting bridge to Santa Maria islet have been built, the Government said.
In view of the evolution of the “national business environment”, the Government agreed in 2019 to a proposal to carry out the Macao Legend project in phases, the first of which a 90 million euros investment to be completed until February 2021.
More than three years after the signing of this addendum to the agreement, “the first stage has not been completed”, leading Cape Verde Trade Invest (CVTI), entity responsible for monitoring the project on the Government´s side, to request on September 2022 information on the schedule of project execution, and demonstration of the financial capacity for the completion of the project, the statement adds.
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On October 24, Macau Legend requested a 3-month deadline to be able to respond to the request, justifying the delays with the effects of the pandemic and conflict with Ukraine, the Government added. CVTI later agreed to give until the end of 2022 for Macao Legend to provide information, which has not been done so far.
On January 18, CVTI sent a new letter to the Macao Legend, recalling the deadline granted. If answers are not submitted in the due time, the promoter faces “a penalty of triggering of the legal and conventional mechanisms provided for in the various legal instruments” in the bilateral agreements, the Government says.