Blockchain launches coronavirus campaign

by Mia Chapman Last Updated
Blockchain launches coronavirus campaign

A blockchain project has begun a coronavirus campaign to get support organisations and funds need to fight then pandemic.

Micky reports that blockchain project Waves announced last week a market that allowed users to speculate on infection rates in a macabre betting pool on the Waves Exchange.

According to the Johns Hopkins coronavirus map, the numbers of infected people have now topped 1.2 million globally, with deaths from the disease totalling nearly 70,000.

Waves users can buy COVID-DWN or COVID-UP tokens to speculate on whether the number of globally confirmed cases increases or decreases in a seven-day period.

The smart contract governed platform issues A and B tokens and locks up USDN (the exchange stablecoin Neutrino Dollar), distributing them automatically among the winners after the end of the betting period.

The announcement added that the #CryptoCovid19 campaign had already raised more than A$166,158 in charity donations worldwide.

The original campaign was launched by The Giving Block and Gitcoin projects as a charity movement.

Waves joined by donating 10,000 USDT and others including Brave Browser, Gemini Exchange and NEXO have also contributed.

Several other coronavirus-based ventures have been launched by crypto projects as the pandemic continues to wreak havoc across the globe.

Macau keeps casinos open for social impact – expert

An industry consultant has suggested to GGR Asia in March that the reasoning for keeping Macau’s casinos open amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic is now “social” rather than commercial.

The local tourism and casino sector has faced growing challenges in light of many layers of travel restrictions imposed by Macau and by governments outside, in order to combat the spread of the novel coronavirus and its associated infection.

Authorities in Macau’s neighbouring mainland province, Guangdong, implemented a 14-day quarantine treatment for people entering from Macau and Hong Kong.

Guangdong authorities said in a Thursday statement that the province would start requiring all travellers coming from outside China to undergo a 14-day quarantine at designated facilities, and to take a test checking for coronavirus infection.

Such conditions apply to people from Guangdong that have visited Macau and wish to return home.

Earlier this week, the Macau authorities announced more stringent entry limits for visitors arriving from mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan.

The latest round of travel restrictions has further depressed visitor arrivals to Macau.

According to the city’s Public Security Police, Macau received fewer than 250 visitors on Sunday.

In 2019, the statistical daily average was about 108,000 tourist visits per day, based on the year’s 39.4 million arrivals reported by the Statistics and Census Service.

Casino industry consultant Ben Lee, managing partner of IGamiX Management and Consulting said: “With the mainlanders and Hong Kongers now effectively barred from entering Macau, the only rationale possible for keeping the casinos in Macau open right now is a social one, which is to keep Macau residents employed.”

The city’s government has previously indicated its hope that the local casino sector could avoid worker lay-offs amid the coronavirus emergency.

There has been some commentary by observers of the Macau industry noting that the city’s government has considerable negotiating power in its relations with Macau’s six casino licensees, especially during the current crisis.

There is likely to be a public retender for Macau gaming rights linked to the expiry in June 2022 of the existing permits.

The effects of the coronavirus pandemic have led to market-wide temporary closures of casinos in key gaming jurisdictions in the Asia-Pacific region.

Macau ordered the suspension of operations at all casino facilities for 15 days in February, but casinos have since been ordered to reopen.

Guangdong is one of the biggest feeder markets for Macau’s tourism industry with nearly one third of the 39.4 million visitor arrivals from the Chinese province.

In a Friday memo, brokerage JP Morgan Securities (Asia Pacific) noted that the quarantine requirement imposed by Guangdong authorities was a negative for Macau’s casino industry.

“For Macau, this is effectively the same as casino shutdown,” they said.

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