A new report has revealed that Asia is poised to eclipse the United States as the world's biggest gaming market in 2013. This rise is being powered by the region's growing economic prosperity and fondness for gambling.
The gaming sector will be driven by crown jewel Macau -- which has revenues larger than the whole of the US state of Nevada -- and newcomer Singapore, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC) said in its annual outlook.
Revenue Asia is forecast to more than double from $34.3 billion in 2010 to $79.3 billion in 2015 -- representing compound growth of 18.3 percent annually, the PWC report said.
"With this projection, the Asia-Pacific region looks set to overtake the US in 2013 to become the largest region for casino gaming in the world," it said.
According to PWC, gaming revenues in the US -- which includes Las Vegas and the huge East Coast gaming centre of Atlantic City -- are tipped to grow just 5.0 percent annually to $73.3 billion from 2010 to 2015.
Globally, the gaming market is seen expanding 9.2 percent every year until 2015, with revenues rising to $182.8 billion, PWC said, adding that Asia will account for 43.4 percent of the total and the US making up 40.1 percent.
"Asia Pacific will be the fastest-growing region for casino gaming spending over the coming five years," said PWC.
The main driver of Asia's growth is Macau, the southern Chinese city that last year overtook the gambling state of Nevada -- which includes Las Vegas -- while Singapore is also attracting huge crowds since opening its first two casinos last year.
Thanks largely to those two centres, gaming income in Asia rose a stunning 49.7 percent year on year in 2010 to $34.28 billion.
In 2010, revenues globally grew 9.6 percent mostly thanks to the buoyant markets in Asia, which made up for the declines seen in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, PWC said.
"It belies the slump currently facing the industry in some of the major gaming markets as the turbulent global financial markets have curtailed consumer spending significantly," it said.
"However, Asia provides the bright spot in the global industry with huge growth potential.
"New major developments in locations such as Macau and Singapore have been very successful as they tap Asia's rising affluent and mobile middle classes in search of new entertainment."
The United States remains the world's biggest gaming market for now but the dramatic growth seen in Asia will see the region occupying the top spot within the next 24 months, PWC said.
"Going forward, Macau and Singapore will continue to fuel growth in Asia Pacific during the next few years, while other countries in the region may look to encourage growth in casino gaming to gain tourism and tax dollars."