Hong Kong investors have visited the Northern Mariana Islands to look at the viability of reopening the commonwealth’s first casino resort, situated on the island of Tinian.
Tinian Entertainment Corp owner Tim Chen chartered a flight from Hong Kong to Tinian on 12 January to participate in the ribbon-cutting ceremony for Tinian International Airport, which is now complete after 20 years of construction and renovations.
Speaking to local media, Chen stated that he continues to explore the option of re-opening the Tinian Dynasty Hotel and Casino provided that he would not shoulder the $75m in fines its previous owners owed the federal government.
“I brought some investors along with me to try to convince them to invest in this island, we will have a meeting with the mayor and the delegation members to discuss the project,” he said.
Chen confirmed that the negotiations for Tinian Dynasty started two years ago, but that progress had been halted by the huge obligation that the new investor would have to assume.
He said he has contracted lawyers in Washington DC to look for a way of taking over Tinian Dynasty’s operations without taking on its federal fines, which were imposed by the US Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCen).
“I hope it’s possible. I am willing to invest and that’s why I hired a lobbyist in Washington DC., to help me resolve this FinCen issue,” Chen added.
Tinian Dynasty’s former owner, Hong Kong Entertainment (Overseas) Investments, filed for bankruptcy in November 2015.