Thailand Makes Move to Legalize Casino Gaming

The Thai government is closer to legalising casino gambling in the country, after 253 of 257 lawmakers in the House voted in favor of a measure that would legalize the activity.

Thailand is looking to legalize casino gaming in order to draw in wealthy tourists from the region (notably China) to the country. Additionally, there'll be a large influx of foreign investment to build casinos and resorts, providing thousands of jobs to Thai citizens. The bill would also stop Thai citizens from visiting neighboring countries like Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia in order to gamble.

Gambling would be taxed at a rate of 17% on gross gaming revenues, which is lower than many of the neighboring countries that provide the activity. Licences would be good for 20 years, but companies would be required to invest $2.7 billion into the country to be approved for a licence. There are reportedly several big-name betting operators salivating at the chance to enter the market, with MGM Resorts International reportedly eyeing the country.

The measure is being backed by PM Srettha Thavisin and is now headed to the country's cabinet to be approved.

In a statement posted on Twitter, Thai Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin said: "The entertainment complexes will enhance the country's tourism industry. In the past, we have wasted enough time and opportunity. The government will reclaim the lost time and turn it into an economic opportunity for the country and its citizens."

Casino Listings News is following this story and will be updating readers as we learn more.

About the author

Kingston Li // Asia Correspondent
Kingston Li
Kingston is a big fan of Baccarat and Texas Hold'em Poker and has tested his skills in tournaments around Asia and the world. He covers the latest gambling news from Asia for Casino Listings. In his spare time, Kingston enjoys hiking, video gaming, and playing disc golf.

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