Casino developers are not welcome to the Malaysian state of Johor.
Datuk Mohamed Khaled Nordin, chief of the Malaysian state of Johor, has denied rumors of a casino being built in a local hotel. According to him, the rumors recently published on several online news portals are false and “mischievous”.
The state leader wanted to make it clear that, while he does not know where the information came from, he is not prepared to support any casino projects in the area: “I would like to reiterate here and assure Johoreans that Johor will not have a casino. We also do not approve other types of gambling centers.”
Besides, Mohamed Khaled added, Malaysian gambling laws dictate that operating licenses for casinos are issued by the federal government, not state authorities.
Currently, the country has only one land-based gambling venue where Malaysians are allowed to play table and card games. Clearly Johor is not prepared to accommodate a new casino resort, even though with online gambling sites in Malaysia being illegal, the business would surely prove profitable for the state.
State officials claim they did not receive any applications or proposals for a casino resort. While expecting investors to show increased interest in Iskandar Malaysia, Mohamed Khaled promises to be very thorough in choosing future partners.
“We will be selective when it comes to investments for Iskandar and only go for those which could create economic spills-over to Johor,” he said.