Cambodia has extremely friendly gambling laws and the Cambodian government is encouraging foreign enterprises to invest into the country and establish new casinos. The government’s move appears to be paying strong dividends as recent reports confirm that the government has collected $25 million from gaming taxes in 2014. This is an increase of 12% when compared to the revenue collected in 2013.
There are as many as 59 casinos licensed in Cambodia and its gambling revenue is derived primarily from tourists and expats. The majority of tourists visiting Cambodia’s casinos come from Vietnam and China – where gambling is not permitted. Now that Macau has imposed tighter regulations on its casino industry, a number of VIP gamblers from Mainland China have opted to travel to Cambodia and spend huge sums of money in the casinos.
In a statement, Ros Phirun, director general of the financial industry department said “The casino sector has not only generated revenue for the state’s coffer, but also contributed to developing areas along the border”. As many as half the casinos in the country are located in special zones along the borders. Players can enter the country without a visa in these zones, but must pass through regular visa checkpoints to go beyond the casino zones. The largest casino in Cambodia is NagaWorld, in Phnom Penh (pictured) with over 75,000 square feet of gaming floor and more than a quarter million square feet of convention, entertainment, and meeting space.