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HK$7-Billion Racetrack Investment

Published: September 12, 2011 2:34 pm ET

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Reinvesting monies back into raceways has proved positive in the past. For example, the millions the Woodbine Entertainment Group pumped back into Mohawk Racetrack has helped the Campbellville, Ont. oval maintain its status of being one of the most picturesque tracks in North America. Now, a racing organization has announced a HK$7-billion plan (CAD$887-million) to transform its racetracks.

A report by the South China Morning Post has explained how in China this past weekend, The Jockey Club, which operates both the Sha Tin and the Happy Valley racecourses, announced details of an HK$7-billion plan to transform the two racetracks.

The article states that, this year, The Jockey Club recorded a whopping net profit of HK$7.64-billion (CAD$968.7-million), which was up 12 per cent on its year-to-year numbers. Those profits and gains come even though The Jockey Club is under stiff competition from offshore gambling.

Winfried Engelbrecht-Bresges, chief executive with The Jockey Club, was quoted as saying that his organization employees a massive amount of staff, is one of the country's major employers, is highly taxed and gives generously to charities.

"So when we talk about the master plan and about maintaining our attractiveness and competitiveness, this is not only about racing," Engelbrecht-Bresges said. "We are one of the few really global brands that Hong Kong has ... But we are doing this despite working under the most constrained racing model anywhere, paying the highest tax rate and there is competition growing in strength all around us."

(With files from the South China Morning Post)

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