Discussions over the issue of a decree on casino business activities in the country heated up a recent session of Vietnam’s National Assembly Standing Committee held in the capital Hanoi.
At the session, most of NA Standing Committee members agreed with the proposal of allowing Vietnamese residents to play in casinos; under the explicit following of a strict management and monitoring plan as casinos have great influence on the country’s socio-economy.
According to current Vietnamese gambling laws, only foreigners and overseas Vietnamese are allowed to play in casinos.
According to statistics by Vietnam’s Ministry of Finance (MoF), there are now seven casino projects in Vietnam being licensed with six of them already put into operation.
Five of the country’s casinos are small-scale in Hai Phong, Lao Cai, Da Nang and Quang Ninh and two new large-scale casino projects in Quang Nam and Ba Ria-Vung Tau.
Total revenue of the five casinos reached $44 million in 2012; creating jobs for around 200-500 people each.
Vietnamese may be allowed
Minister of Planning and Investment Bui Quang Vinh previously said there have been 10 provinces and cities across the country asking for licenses to open casinos.
The session of Vietnam’s NA Standing Committee also saw discussion among participants whether to allow Vietnamese residents to play in casino.
Doi Song va Phap Luat also quoted Ha Ton Vinh, an expert who consults for the Vietnamese government on casino law as saying that Vietnam is losing some 800 million U.S. dollars tax revenue per year due to Vietnamese residents’ illegal gambling in Cambodia.
According to the draft decree on casino business, in order to be licensed, investors are required to commit a registered capital of at least 4 billion U.S. dollars and to have at least 10 years of experience in the field.
Other individuals are banned from gambling using electronic gaming facilities in Vietnam in any form, so mobile betting and internet casinos are out of the question for now too.