The government now allows Vietnamese to go to only two casinos, in Van Don and Phu Quoc. Ha Ton Vinh, who has been pursuing multi-billion dollar casino projects in the last 10 years, commented that the two casino projects, capitalized at US$2 billion in Lang Co, Hue City and Bac Van Phong of Cam Ranh have just received the government’s approval in principle.
Vinh said investors have to prove that their projects can satisfy criteria, including the contribution to local tourism and economic development and the state budget.
According to William Eadington from University of Nevada, Reno, there are three types of casino projects to develop – integrated resort with casino in rural and remote areas; casinos in cities; and playing machines located in many different places in the community. Each type can make significant economic presence in the region.
A circular guiding the implementation of Decree 03 is expected to be released soon, which investors will consider carefully to draw up their long-term business plan in a market, worth US$3-US$6 billion as estimated that Worldcasinodirectory.com.
Meanwhile, according to Union Gaming, the business from slot machines alone may bring US$300 million a year.
Analysts say Vietnam should follow the Malaysian model in regulating casinos business. Genting plateau, 4,000 meters above sea water level, considered the country’s casino metropolis, receives 10 million foreign travelers ever year.
Su Yi, a tour guide, said the annual fee, US$2,000, from every member, including members from Vietnam, goes to the local authorities’ budget. A special business tax, 25%, is paid to the national budget.
According to Nguyen Huu Phuoc from Phuoc Partners, the framework to regulate casino business will comprise provisions on tax. Casino business will bear corporate income tax (20%), luxury tax (35%) and VAT (10%). Those who work for casinos will pay personal income tax.
As such, the localities where there are casinos will have additional income from corporate income tax, personal income tax and from gamblers, who have to buy admission tickets, VND1 million for 24 consecutive hours of playing or VND25 million a month.
The localities will have the right to use the income from casinos to pay for social welfare, public works and work to ensure security and social order.
two weeks after the release of Decree 03 on casino businesses, the government issued Decree 06 on horse and dog race businesses and football betting.