Taiwan votes for casino license

Before 2009, gambling was illegal in the entire city.

During the following month, a ballot will be held for residents to decide casino status in the island.

Taiwan.- A second referendum will be set before the end of the year in Penghu, Taiwan, to determine the legal status of casino offerings. The outlying island would let its citizens choose the final decision once the government prepares the right criteria for the county’s referendum.

Though gambling is prohibited in Taiwan, the associative islands have the option to vote in favour of casino venues for tourist, after the national Legislature approved an amendment to the Offshore Islands Development Act in 2009. The bill allows outlying islands to manage their own gaming activities, just for tourists, with the previous approval through a ballot by the local residents.

Penghu islanders achieved over 5,000 signatures to develop the referendum. According to Chen Meng –coalition that advocates for casino legalisation–, the signatures confirmations surpass the 5 percent of the total eligible voters and when the number reaches the 6,000, the government would have to prepare the referendum process.

The Taiwanese island had its first referendum on September 26th, 2009. The results showed that 56.44 percent of the total valid ballots were against the casino project, whilst 43.56 of voters were in favour. A minimum percentage was declared invalid. If this year’s ballot does not pass the bill, the same project would not be able to be introduced again at least for three years, according to the Referendum Act.