Monday 28. March, 2016

Aquis Great Barrier Reef Casino and Resort a Step Closer to Development

Tony Fung’s $8.15 billion Aquis Great Barrier Reef Casino and Resort is a step closer to development after he reportedly signed a deal with two Chinese companies to back the project. The Hong Kong-based tycoon signed an agreement with the Chinese state owned group CCCC International Holding and Chinese developer Tandellen. A formal announcement is expected within the coming month.

The two companies will provide development and financial backing to the project which plans to convert a coastal strip north of Cairns into a resort, casino and convention centre. The resort will have 7,500 rooms over eight hotels, an artificial lake and a golf course.

Aquis has already taken their alliance with Tandellen and CCCCI to the next level with a $40 million acquisition of a site on the Gold Coast around a week ago. The deal was approved by the Foreign Investment Review Board, which was necessary after CCCCI was sanctioned by the World Bank in 2011 for bid rigging and other practices by an entity that CCCCI acquired in 2006.

The development has been projected to create around 10,000 new jobs in Cairns which currently has an economy that predominantly relies on tourism.

A formal proposal for the resort was first submitted to the Queensland state government in July 2013. Fung had to reduce his plans for the resort in order to secure the necessary approvals from the Federal Government. The first stage of development is planned to begin in 2017; however, they still need to secure approval from the state government before they can break ground.

David Chu, Fung’s partner, suggested that he would get the state approval he needs if he would provide a more realistic and scaled back roll out for phase one of the project in Yorkeys Knob.


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