Potentially the largest casino project in Russia is underway in the Maritime Gambling Zone of Far Eastern Russia. The Primorye area, outside of Vladivostok, has attracted $700M worth of investment from Macau and Russian casino moguls as it looks to tap into the Asian market.
Russian gambling law has allowed for the gambling zone – which will create more than 20,000 jobs – in the region to boost tourism, especially from Asian countries. With the border to China close by and Japan only over the water, it is hoped that tourists will flock to the region for a taste of the West, while taking in the casino while there.
The license for the Maritime Gambling Territory is owned by The First Gambling Company of the East, which was – until recently – solely owned by Oleg Drozdov. The current owner, Oriental Regent, has been purchased by Chinese and Taiwanese companies, with only 30% remaining under Drozdov’s control.
This is massive gambling news for both Russia and the Far East, and it is expected that Chinese tourists will make up the vast majority of the casino’s visitors. As Macau is currently the only Chinese territory where gambling is allowed, Northern Chinese are expected to flock across the border to take advantage of the new build.
Despite a ban on online casinos in China, many gamblers still user foreign based sites, many of which even take payment from Chinese accounts. As this is still technically illegal, the gambling authorities and financers behind the Primorye zone are hoping they will flock to a brick and mortar casino instead.
With the largest investment in a Russian casino currently standing at 16 billion Roubles ($480m) for the Azov City Zone, this new investment would overtake it by some distance. With online casinos in Russia much the same as in China, Russian gamblers will also be happy to see a new casino on the map.