Gambling in South Korea: New Resort for Foreigners Only

Written by Petar on 2015-08-29 at 20:06
korea integrated resort The plans look promising (Photo: Resorts World Jeju)
The government in Seoul promotes gambling in South Korea according to their last developmental plan

The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism of South Korea has announced yesterday their new developmental strategy which aims towards establishing an integrated resorts (IRs) center in country. According to the media release that was available yesterday in South Korea the strategy is quite different from the previous one officially implemented by the Ministry in the past year. 

This year’s strategy thus stresses the profitability of the gambling sector and its role for the further development of the country, gambling news report. It is centered on the new integrated resorts that will be comprised of modern casinos opened for foreigners only. So far the ministry only announced that there are nine sites reserved for gambling in South Korea. In the upcoming period the request for proposal phase (RFP) should proceed, after which the picture about these resorts will be clearer in the public.

The governmental strategy promotes gambling in South Korea


The Ministry is opened for the proposals from yesterday. The application process lasts until 27th of November, a period after which the two companies granted with the licensees would be chosen and announced on the website, gambling websites online report. There might be a possibility for increasing the number of licensees but that is something that the Ministry will additionally decide for. The sites that have been chosen until now for the building of casinos include the six free economic zones in Incheon, as well as Ung-dong in the Jinhae Free Economic Zone of Gyeongsangnam-do. Additionally, it includes the redevelopment area in Busan North Port and Yeosu Gyeongdo Tourism Complex in Jeollanam-do. In the previous phase of the project which was called “request for concept“, 34 companies showed their interest in joining the realization of the project.

• South Korea promotes foreigner-only casinos
• 34 companies interested in investing
• Incheon to become as developed as Jeju
According to JP Morgan Securities (Asia Pacific) Ltd, the Macau casino operator Galaxy Entertainment Group Ltd and NagaCorp Ltd, are among the companies that are most likely to be serious contenders for getting the licensees. As online gambling sites in South Korea report, the proposals that will win should be worked out in a four-year period and the minimum investment should be around USD 850 million. The foreign investment in the project should be about USD 500 million. The partnership between foreign and domestic companies interested in joint investments will be an advantage since it will contribute not only in terms of bringing new capital in the economy but in development of the domestic capacities as well. Thus gambling in South Korea is seen as a profitable industry worth to be promoted.

Integrated resort korea
Looking forward for this dreamy place (Photo: Resorts World Jeju)

Gambling in South Korea: can the Koreans attract foreign gamblers?


Beside the casino resorts the strategy plans to develop other facilities as well. The casino floor will take only 5% of the total floor area of the objects that are to be build. The rest remains for building of around 1,000 high class hotels and includes 20,000 square meters of space that is reserved for opening shops of several world brands. There will also be places for conferences as well as meeting rooms both estimated to cost around USD 16 million. The so called theme attractions in the end are planned to worth about USD 45 million. The cultural facilities won't be neglected either. They will include the building of cinemas and theaters in the resorts as well as other entertainment facilities that will fill the stay of the costumers there with more contents.

Integrated resort korea
The plans look indeed good (Photo: Resorts World Jeju)

The review of the application will start in December and these will probably be the last two licensees that will be granted in the country, with the exception of the Jeju island. This island is a famous tourist destination in the but it is administered by a semi-autonomous government. This island already possesses foreigners-only casino complexes that allow Chinese tourists to enjoy gambling in South Korea. The government expects that with the opening of the integrated resorts in Incheon, the balance between these gambling centers in the country will be more equal. The resort that will be open in Incheon will be the fourth in the country beside the two that are already in process of building, report online casinos in South Korea. The one is the Paradise complex by Sega Sammy Holdings Inc., and the other the Caesars by the Entertainment Corp and Lippo Ltd.
To learn more about gambling in South Korea, check out the country home page.
For more Korean gambling and betting news, click here.
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