Casino Canberra to add poker machines

After the Legislative Assembly passed the Casino Act 2017, casinos, led by Casino Canberra, are set to add poker machines.

Canada.- The clubs and hotels in the ACT monopoly over poker machines has been terminated as the Legislative Assembly passed the Casino (Electronic Gaming) Act 2017, which allows casinos to acquire pokies. Casino Canberra is set to lead the new scenario with the addition of up to 200 machines and 60 fully automated table games.

However, Casino Canberra is required to develop a social impact assessment for public comment over at least eight weeks and redevelop its site before having pokies running on the gaming floor. Revamping the site will cost US$258.7 million and will turn the venue into a resort-style entertainment, dining and retail site in Canberra, owner Aquis Entertainment stated.

Attorney-General Gordon Ramsay said that “minimising the harm that comes with electronic gaming machines and maximising the benefits to Canberra of this change are the goals of the new framework,” and added: “When gaming machines begin to operate at the Casino, they will be part of a renewed entertainment precinct for Canberrans to enjoy (…) In addition, the casino will be required to complete a substantial redevelopment before it can begin operating any machines.”

However, legislation foresees a US$1,56 maximum bet limit at machines to prevent its excesive use, in addition to the 200 machine cap per casino. Even so, according to Hong Kong-based Aquis Entertainment, the casino will attract around 750k extra visitors to the city after the redevelopment.

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