In South Korea, the only operator to offer a casino resort to nationals is Kangwon Land Inc. Operating the Kangwon Land Casino and Hotel, the company is not happy about recent developments in regards to a second casino being considered that would allow nationals of South Korea to gamble as well. Kangwon Land Inc., issued a statement saying they are in opposition to the idea that a second casino should be opened in the country and allow locals to participate in gambling activity.
The People’s Party has seen lawmakers reportedly seek to create a revising bill that would allow a second casino to be able to offer nationals the opportunity to gamble. Lawmakers would be proposing that a casino be created in the Saemangeum Development area. This area is one of the eight free economic zones of South Korea.
There are currently 17 casinos located in South Korea but only Kangwon Land Casino allows nationals to gamble. According to BusinessKorea, Kangwon Land believes its casino monopoly, in a remote part of the country, is essential for the livelihood of more than 300,000 individuals in the region who had lost their jobs due to restructuring by the government of the mining industry. A casino in the Saemangeum cannot be justified in that it will have detrimental and intangible effects, and that the original reasoning behind the project was to create a farmland supply.
The Special Law on the Abandoned Mining Area is what allows the casino to offer gambling options for locals of South Korea. The 1995 legislation was created to boost the economy in the Kangwon province after the mining industry was shut down. The casino’s license is set to expire by 2025 although the ability to renew does exist and will most likely take place.
Kangwon Land also believes that allowing a second casino in South Korea to be open to locals will have a complete lack of national consensus. The casino stated in the interview with BusinessKorea: “Policy demand and current attempts to build a casino in the region are not that different from those of some local governments and interest groups that tried in the past to do so in a populist way.”
The statement made by Kangwon Land is the first to be seen after the People’s Party representatives announced the new casino plan last week.