IMPERIAL Pacific International Holdings announced that it has signed an agreement with independent companies to complete the construction of IPI’s casino-hotel in Garapan, lease 250 hotel rooms and 15 villas, and operate a shopping mall.

The announcement was made by IPI Holdings Executive Director Xu Zhongxiang on June 23, 2022.

In its "Annual Results For the Year ended Dec. 31, 2021,” IPI Holdings, the parent company of IPI CNMI LLC, listed its "endeavors" to address all concerns by the company's auditors who reported "net losses of HK$1,077,617 [US$137,000] for the year that ended 31 December 2021, net current liabilities of HK$12,179,909 [US$1.55 million], net liabilities of HK$8,304,207 [US$1.05 million] and capital commitments of approximately HK$509,000,000 [US$64.8 million] as of 31 December 2021."

IPI Holdings said its board "will use their best endeavors to take practicable and feasible actions to resolve the issue."

According to IPI Holdings, it has received "an indicative offer of a credit facility of US$100,000,000 (equivalent to HK$777,000,000), which is valid until 27 September 2023 from an independent financial institution. As at the date of this announcement, no drawn down has been made."

IPI Holdings and its subsidiaries, IPI CNMI LLC and Best Sunshine, have also “entered into a construction agreement with an independent construction company which has undertaken to finance and complete the remaining constructions of IPI casino hotel in Garapan.”

IPI Holdings said on March 30, 2022, it entered into a placing agreement with CNI Securities Group Limited, an independent third-party placing agent, "pursuant to which the placing agent has agreed to act as the sole placing agent, on a best effort basis, for the purpose of arranging independent placees to subscribe for bonds of up to an aggregate principal amount of HK$800,000,000 [US$101.9 million] at 6% coupon per annum."

IPI Holdings stated that “Inventive Star and other related parties will provide additional funding to settle the IPI CNMI LLC's operations, liabilities, potential liabilities related to litigation, the casino annual license fee and the community benefit fund and capital investments as and when necessary. The company's management will consider other financing arrangements with a view to increasing the IPI's capitalization/equity, and will continue to refinance and/or rollover its existing loans with a view to improving its liquidity.”

IPI has likewise entered into an exclusive cooperation agreement with Fujian Jiadingsheng Supply Chain Management Co. Ltd. "to form a joint venture which has the exclusive right to operate a shopping mall with an area of 1,000 square meters at IPI for a period of four years commencing from Oct. 20. Jiadingsheng has undertaken that the shopping mall will generate a minimum annual revenue and net profit in the sum of HK$300 million [US$38.2 million] and HK$20 [US$2.54 million] respectively during the term of the agreement and IPI and Jiadingsheng are entitled to share 51% and 49% of the net profit respectively.”

Moreover, IPI and Sino Travel Samoa Limited have entered into an underwriting agreement, pursuant to which Sino Travel has agreed to underwrite the leasing of 250 hotel rooms and 15 villas at IPI for a term of four years after IPI obtains all necessary licenses and approvals from the CNMI government.

“Operation of the casino portion of Imperial Palace‧Saipan has been suspended since 17 March 2020 to help curb the spread of the Covid-19 and subsequently the casino resort developer license has been temporarily suspended by [the Commonwealth Casino Commission] on 23 April 2021 pending the settlement of certain outstanding fees associated with the license,” IPI Holdings said.

Hopeful

Commonwealth Casino Commissioner Ramon M. Dela Cruz in an interview on Friday said he was hopeful about "the ongoing negotiations."

He noted that the commission's funds "will run out by Sept. 30" and all the 11 remaining employees, including the commission's executive director, Andrew Yeom, will have to be furloughed.

The commission is funded by the regulatory fees paid by IPI.

"It is very hard,” Dela Cruz said. “We have requested Gov. Ralph DLG Torres for an appropriation and we are still waiting for his response.”

Dela Cruz said IPI's obligations to the Commonwealth amount to about $57 million, including the fees owed to the commission for three consecutive years.

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