Native Goans to deny entry in casinos in Goa – European Gaming Industry News
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Native Goans to deny entry in casinos in Goa

Niji Narayan

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Photo source: gutshotmagazine.com
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Manohar Parrikar, the chief minister of the Indian state of Goa, has confirmed that the government will soon introduce a new casino policy which is likely to come into effect next year, which would ban native Goans from entering casinos. The move follows the appointment of a gaming commissioner to regulate the industry.

The chief minister explained in the state assembly: “As a policy, Goans will not be permitted to enter the casino playing areas. Only visiting tourists shall be allowed. A mechanism will be put in place once the gaming commissioner is appointed.”

He also talked about the offshore casinos operating in the Mandovi river, which are set to be relocated once they find a proper zone. “The Government shall identify notified designated zones where present offshore casinos can be shifted. That means the government will notify zones… Licences for offshore casinos will be issued provided they grant their willingness within a year`s time,” Parrikar said.

Source: Focus Gaming News

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Nazara Technologies Files for IPO

Niji Narayan

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Nazara Technologies Files for IPO
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Nazara Technologies Ltd, the Indian gaming company backed by billionaire Rakesh Jhunjhunwala, has filed for an IPO.

The company filed IPO documents with India’s market regulator on Friday. Its impending debut on the local exchanges could encourage other Indian startups to tap public markets, after years of explosive growth in mobile and internet usage created giant private firms from Paytm to Walmart Inc.’s Flipkart.

Founded by gamer Nitish Mittersain in 2000, when he was a college undergrad, Nazara is among the firms that have benefited from a global boom in smartphone gaming that began even before the pandemic drove millions online. Mittersain started the company with 30 million rupees borrowed from friends and family, only to get derailed during the dotcom bust. The firm spent its first decade clearing debt, but steadily built market share by acquiring fellow gaming startups.

It is now seeking to be among the first major Indian startups to go public at a time of burgeoning investor interest in the country’s technology sphere. Facebook Inc. and Alphabet Inc.’s Google are pouring billions into partnerships with local operator Jio Platforms Inc., while Amazon.com Inc. founder Jeff Bezos has said that “the 21st century is going to be the Indian century.”

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Thai PM Considers Legalising Gambling

Niji Narayan

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Thai PM Considers Legalising Gambling
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Thailand’s Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has confirmed that he is now considering legalising gambling in a bid to curb the growth of illegal gambling dens.

The Bangkok Post reports that Prayut is said to be open to holding public discussions on the pros and cons of legalising gambling despite being opposed to the idea himself.

In particular, the Prime Minister is concerned that Thailand’s most recent COVID-19 outbreak has been largely attributed to illegal gambling dens, with Taweesilp Visanuyothin, spokesman for the Centre for COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA), confirming Friday that Prayut was ready to discuss the idea. Prayut is Chairman of the CCSA.

According to Visanuyothin, the key question for Prayut is whether gambling can be considered morally acceptable by the majority of Thais.

The issue of casino development in Thailand is not a new one, having most recently been raised following the passing of highly-revered King Bhumibol Adulyadej in 2016 after 70 years on the Thai throne. A year earlier, none other than Las Vegas Sands Corp had expressed its interest in developing a casino resort in a major Thai city, preferably Bangkok, should the opportunity arise. Sands is well-known for preferring to develop its mega-IRs in cities with large populations.

Thailand remains one of only three ASEAN nations without legal casinos, alongside Indonesia and Brunei, although it has been estimated that as many as half of its adult population gambles via illegal means. With a population of almost 70 million, Thailand is the world’s 20th most populous country.

The prospect of genuine discussions over casino gambling comes as Prayut approved on Friday the formation of a 10-member committee to inspect the investigations by state officials into cases of illegal gambling. The Royal Thai Police is currently looking into the actions of police officers in Nonthaburi, part of Greater Bangkok, who are alleged to have turned a blind eye to an illegal gambling den that was raided and shut down last week.

Were casinos to be legalised in Thailand, it could severely affect the profitability of Cambodian and Lao properties on their borders with Thailand. These properties rely heavily on traffic from Thailand and include casinos in Poipet, Cambodia, and the three casinos in Laos – Savan Legend in Savannakhet, Dansavanh near Vientiane and King’s Roman in the Golden Triangle near the point where the Thai, Laos and Myanmar borders meet.

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Sands China Completes Latest Round of Responsible Gambling Initiatives for Staff

Niji Narayan

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Sands China Completes Latest Round of Responsible Gambling Initiatives for Staff
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Sands China has completed a series of activities in support of the Macau government’s Responsible Gambling Promotions 2020, including the promotion of responsible gambling behaviour among staff and further raising their awareness of problem gambling.

The campaign, which ran from August through December, was organised by the MSAR Social Welfare Bureau, the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau (DICJ) and the University of Macau’s Institute for the Study of Commercial Gaming.

Sands China’s initiatives included holding two responsible gaming workshops for its staff, the first promoting better communication between staff members and their children with a focus on self-control and financial management skills, while the second aimed to provide a better understanding of gambling disorders and how staff can seek help for themselves or others.

There were also a series of roadshows held at Sands China properties to further increase awareness of responsible gaming for staff.

“Sands China understands the importance of responsible gaming to the well-being of the Macau community, and it is our pleasure to support the Macau government’s Responsible Gambling Promotions 2020. Through various in-house initiatives and those with local organisations, we are pleased to again see our team members supporting the company’s corporate social responsibility efforts and the Macau government’s annual responsible gaming awareness promotion,” Wilfred Wong, President of Sands China, said.

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