Mounting competition in Macau's gaming sector has pushed Galaxy Entertainment, owned by the family of Lui Che-woo, to extend by two years the maturity on $2.37 billion worth of fixed-rate notes. The subsequent reduction in its interest payments will give the casino operator the financial breathing space it needs to operate in the cut-throat environment. The extension - from August 21 this year to September 30, 2008 - would slash its interest rates from 9 per cent to a fixed rate of 6 per cent compound interest a year, resulting in annual savings of about $70 million. Galaxy deputy chairman Francis Lui Yiu-tung said the new arrangement would strengthen the company's finances, allowing it to compete against its rivals. Galaxy operates Waldo Casino with 63 tables in Macau, but it has an ambitious target of opening four more casinos, three of them scheduled to open this year. Its Rio Casino project would have 89 gaming tables, while Grand Waldo at Cotai would have 146 gaming tables. Both are expected to open in the first quarter. Meanwhile, the group's flagship development, Galaxy StarWorld, with 240 tables, is due to open in August, just one month ahead of rival casino project Wynn Resort. Galaxy's total, a traditional benchmark for market share in the industry, will be 538 tables after the three new casinos are in full operation. Mr Lui said the number would account for more than 20 per cent of the 2,400 tables in Macau. With stiffer competition, average daily net win for gaming houses in Macau has diminished. 'At present, the daily net win in Macau has dropped to about five times that of its counterpart in Las Vegas,' Mr Lui said. In 2004, Macau's gaming tables were getting an average daily net win of at least 10 times that of Las Vegas. 'Nevertheless, Macau is still appealing as a good return on investment even if this figure declines in the near future,' Mr Lui said. Official statistics show the total net win was about $46.6 billion last year, shared among 1,000 tables.