Singapore delays request for casino proposals - Sunday 12th of June 2005

Singapore needs more time to review the feedback from bidders to operate the city-state's first two casinos and will delay requests for casino proposals until the third quarter, the government said on Friday.

"We are sending out the requests for proposals in the third quarter. In the meantime, we are getting feedback from various bidders," a spokeswoman for the Singapore Tourism Board said.

The government had previously said it would seek proposals by the end of June.

A total of 12 groups are in the running to build Singapore's two casino resorts and the government expects to announce its preferred candidates in December. Construction is scheduled to start in June 2006 and the resorts to open in 2009.

The shortlist includes Singapore government-linked developer Keppel Land Ltd. and Las Vegas gaming giant Harrah's Entertainment Inc. , as well as CapitaLand Ltd. and MGM Mirage .

U.S. investment bank Merrill Lynch believes the resorts will have a combined investment of $3.5 billion to $4 billion and could possibly be the most expensive casino developments in the world.

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