The free economic zone of Yeongjong is being built up to cater to Chinese and Japanese travelers.
The Korean Times reported that the South Korean government is about to issue a license for a mega casino project in Yeongjong Island. The project was proposed by LOCZ, a consortium of Caesar’s Entertainment and the Lippo Group, an Indonesian property development. The government was expected to give a ruling by February 27 but said it needed more time to review the consortium’s credit rating.
The development will be built on a 40,000 square meter plot of land and is expected to be completed by 2018, at a cost of $691 million. LOCZ has indicated that it hopes to expand the complex by 2022 to include additional hotels, shopping centers and concert venues.
Gambling is Yeongjog-only
Korean gambling laws prohibit casinos from operating anywhere except in the free economic zone of Yeongjon Island. The island is home to several foreign-only casinos, which cater primarily to Chinese and Japanese businessmen. Gambling has become increasingly popular in Asia as the region becomes more economically developed.
However, Japan does not allow casino gambling, and China allows it only in the autonomous city of Macau. Online casinos in China and Japan are also banned. The lack of options in these countries has made places like Macau, Singapore, the Philippines as Yeongjong hubs for gamblers across the Pacific region.