The National Institute of Development Administration has reported the results of a poll on the possibility of allowing the development of integrated resorts and casinos.
Thailand.- A week after the government of Thailand announced it was studying the possibility of legalising casinos, the National Institute of Development Administration has reported that the majority of Thai citizens would be against the move. In a poll, 56.83 per cent of residents said they were against legalising gambling.
Respondents cited fears that gambling could cause family conflicts, debt problems, and crime. Some said casinos shouldn’t be allowed because Thailand is a Buddhist country. On the other hand, 21.25 per cent were in favour of developing integrated resorts in the country to collect taxes and avoid residents going abroad to gamble. Some 18.13 per cent said casinos would help stimulate the country’s economy.
Of those polled, 93.7 per cent had never been to a casino, while 4.4 per cent said they had been to a casino abroad, and 0.91 per cent said in Thailand itself.
According to The Bangkok Post, Wissanu Krea-ngam, deputy prime minister, has said the government will study the “ethical issues” related to casinos and what form of the legal framework might ensure the business will be properly regulated and taxed.
For now, betting is completely illegal in Thailand, aside from state lotteries and horseracing through the Bangkok Turf Club. Nonetheless, illegal gambling is widespread.
Bangkok would be ideal location for casino resort, analysts say
Industry consultant Michael Zhu of Innovation Group has told GGRAsia that Bangkok could be a potential prime location for casino resorts if the government legalises gambling.
Zhu said: “Bangkok has better infrastructure and connectivity than any other city in Thailand, enabling it to accommodate more tourists and other business volumes that would come with the establishment of an IR.”