Vietnamese casino operators are happy with last year’s results, which allowed gambling revenues to increase along with contributions to the country’s treasury. Last week the Ministry of Finance published the figures that show the income records of the eight casinos that are operating in the country.
In 2019, the casinos together generated revenues of VND2.5t (US $ 107.4m), with a contribution to the state budget of VND1.34t. Compared to 2018, the revenue figure last year (VND1.56t) increased by 60%. Similarly, 2018 revenue was 31% higher than the previous year.
It was in 2017 when Vietnam approved precisely lifting the ban on local residents to be able to play in casinos.
The first establishment that served for the pilot test of the game with the local players was the Corona Resort & Casino located on the island of Phu Quoc in the province of Kieng Giang. As of January 2019, the casino attracted about 105,200. Of these, almost half (47,400) were Vietnamese citizens.
That year, Corona’s revenues reached VND1.43t, representing around 60% of the overall market.
Another casino project that was approved to accept locals is Sun Group, located in the Van Don Economic Zone, Quang Ninh province. But the casino has not been developed yet and its completion is expected by 2029. On the other hand, developer Sun Group hopes to secure more casino concessions before starting construction of the gambling sites.
The government makes investment conditions more flexible
Additionally, Sun Group is requesting that the project’s license be extended to 70 years instead of the current 50 years. It also expects the government to loosen the minimum capital requirements for integrated resort developers a bit, currently set at $ 2 billion.
Investor requests have been heard by the Ministry of Finance and it has allowed casino sponsors in poorer regions like Van Don, who have made significant investments in infrastructure there, to include such investments up to 25% as part of the minimum amount of $ 2 billion.
The Ministry also agrees to the elimination of the minimum investment requirement of 50% of the $ 2 billion, before the operators receive the gaming license.
With respect to Sun Group, the company has invested more than the required amount in infrastructure projects, including the Van Don International Airport as well as a connecting highway.
Likewise, the Ministry has asked the government to also allow casino licensees to have more freedom to advertise their services. For some time, the Corona casino has been requesting authorization to promote its products on the island above the actual property limits, which is not currently allowed.
In the same way, the Ministry has also requested greater administrative sanctions for casino operators that violate the regulations.