In Thailand and a new survey has reportedly revealed that almost 81% of respondents would support the idea of legalizing gambling and allowing foreign firms to construct and operate at least one Las Vegas-style casino resort.
According to a Thursday report from The Thaiger news service citing an earlier story from the Matichon daily newspaper, the exercise was conducted by the Casino Committee of Thailand and polled 3,296 people on their casino opinions. The source detailed that 80.67% of respondents had welcomed the idea of bringing a gambling-friendly resort to the south Asian nation so as to attract even more foreign tourists and boost the local economy.
Thailand is reportedly home to nearly 70 million people but unlike the neighboring nations of Malaysia, Laos and Cambodia does not allow any forms of legal casino gaming. The worsening economic climate in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic purportedly last year prompted the right-wing coalition government of Prime Minister Prayut Chan-O-Cha to establish a special cross-bench body that is investigating a variety of measures that could well lead to the legalization of some western-style gambling entertainment.
A Member of Parliament for the opposition Pheu Thai political party, Jakkapon Tangsuttitham, serves as a spokesperson for the Casino Committee of Thailand and he reportedly disclosed that around 57% of those surveyed suggested the city of Bangkok should host any coming casino resort. The figure purportedly went on to explain that areas within 60 miles of the tourist hotspots of Rayong and Pattaya as well as multiple border provinces were moreover suggested as possible homes for such a gambling-friendly facility.
As to what any future casino resort should additionally feature and the Casino Committee of Thailand reportedly detailed that roughly 64% of respondents had expressed their desire for shopping while 40% wanted a spa. The organization purportedly also noted that 39% of those surveyed requested that such a facility play host to a bank or financial institution with 37% happy for just a gambling-only project.
However, the Casino Committee of Thailand reportedly noted that its poll furthermore discovered that 55% of respondents were worried about the prospects of a new casino resort increasing crime with 53% anxious over rising debt and 40% concerned about foreign business donations and involvement.
The news service reported that the Casino Committee of Thailand has additionally been conducting seminars in areas that could well be selected to host the nation’s inaugural casino resort including the border provinces of Chiang Rai and Tak. Those attending have purportedly been treated to discussions regarding potential economic and investment benefits alongside the efforts that would be made to stamp out illegal gambling and tax evasion.
Tangsuttitham reportedly noted that the Casino Committee of Thailand now intends to submit the findings of this survey to the President of the country’s National Assembly, Chuan Leekpai, on July 27 with a view to holding a parliamentary debate at a later date.