Two weeks after asking for bids for the rights to operate the Argentino Hotel Casino And Resort in the coastal city of Piriapolis and Uruguay’s Tourism Ministry has received only one official tender.

According to a report from G3 Newswire, the facility’s current operator, Mendez Y Pereira Sociedad Colectiva, will continue to hold the concession if the process is not declared void and in return pay an annual fee to the state calculated as a percentage of its income.

The Uruguayan government first announced in December that it would be asking for bids to run the hotel and casino facility located some 60 miles east of Montevideo and the whole process was due to kick off on March 1. However, Lilian Kechichian, Tourism Minister for Uruguay, postponed the start of the process until September 1 in the face of numerous alleged requests from potential bidders.

Under the terms of a revamped licensing system, the new concessionaire will be required to operate a minimum of 180 slots but not more than 220 alongside five roulette machines and a pair each of blackjack and poker tables. In addition, 35% of the employees must be Uruguayan nationals while the venue is to be run via a mixed system rather than being owned entirely by the state. This 30-year arrangement will see the government receive 35% to 45% of any profits while the operator is to be responsible for equipping and furnishing the casino alongside overseeing security and promoting the casino to tourists.

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