Chinese casino hub Macao’s elite choose new leader

MACAO (AP) — An elite pro-Beijing panel has chosen a new leader for the Chinese casino gambling hub Macao.

Ho Iat-seng was picked Sunday to be the next chief executive of the former Portuguese colony in a selection process with no other candidates.

Ho, a pro-establishment businessman and politician, will become the city’s fifth leader since China took control of Macau in 1999 after more than four centuries of Portuguese rule.

He will replace the city’s current leader, Chui Sai-on, whose term expires in December.

Macao, an hour by high-speed ferry from Hong Kong, is the world’s biggest casino gambling market, raking in revenues dwarfing the Las Vegas Strip and fueled by high rolling mainland Chinese gamblers.

Officials say the 62-year-old Ho garnered 392 votes from Macau’s 400-member “election committee.”

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