The number of gaming venues in the country has gone up 53% in 2018 after the government granted 52 new casino licences.
Cambodia.- The Cambodian government granted 52 new casino licences in 2018 and caused the number of gaming venues to go up 53% year-on-year. Figures were released by the Ministry of Economy and Finance and showed that the casino industry continues to blossum in the Asian country.
The Cambodian market continues to grow and the province of Sihanoukville has surged as one of the top gaming destinations in Asia. According to deputy director-general of the ministry’s General Department of Financial Industry Ros Phirun, there are 88 casinos in the province alone, mainly in its homonymous capital, where complimentary industries as hotels and restaurants have also grown.
However, the industry’s growth hasn’t been welcomed by everybody in the country.
“From a social point of view, casinos worry the Church”, said Fr Gianluca Tavola, superior delegate of the Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions (PIME) in Cambodia.
“The city of Sihanoukville is just one big construction site. An invasion is taking place with Chinese nationals and companies scooping up land and businesses. This has forced several local and foreign businesses to sell, cease their activities or move east, to Kampot,” he said, ignoring the industry’s impact on complimentary businesses.