Taiwan would define casino status

Taiwanese islands of Kinmen County would allow residents to decide whether to approve or reject a local casino and gaming legislation.

Taiwan.- The government of Taiwan is assessing a gaming expansion on the country with the potential approval of a casino project in the islands of Kinmen County this year. Residents would be able to decide a possible gaming legalisation regionally by October or by the end of the year, as GGrasia informed, based on local reports.

The casino proposal in Kinmen County was introduced by an official of the Kuomintang political party, who filed a petition with the regional government to develop a referendum later this year. However, the goal may not be achieved as the national President Tsai Ing-wen, who represents the Democratic Progressive Party, has firmly opposed to casino and gaming legislations so far. Last year, a similar referendum was held in Taiwanese Penghu island chain, where 81 percent of residents voted against casino legalisation.

Taiwan already operates few offshore casino services, but the latest project would allow complete gaming legalisation in Kinmen County and land-based casinos. The first phase of the project requires 6,207 signatures in order to be sent to the local election committee, which will determine the conditions of the referendum.

The country is highly opposed to casino activities as residents consider they may pollute the air and sea. Opponents also question if it would bring real economic benefits. However, in Matsu Island a referendum resulted in the approval of casino legislation to boost the economic and tourism activities. The discussion will be further taken nationwide.