A Cambodian entrepreneur said to own three border casinos serving Thai gamblers has been given permission to expand his gaming businesses into online activities, reports the Khmer Times.
Ly Yong Phat, president of Cambodian conglomerate LYP Group Co Ltd and – according to a biography on the firm’s website – a national senator since 2006, has been allowed by the country’s government to add online gambling on golf, horse races, football and cock fighting to his land-based casino businesses.
The report said the permission is contained in a letter dated September 15 from the country’s Council of Ministers to Interior Minister Sar Kheng. The story said the document had been endorsed by Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen on September 14.
The letter from the council is said to approve a request to add online gambling and to expand the number of slot machines at Koh Kong Resort and at O’Smach Casino in Oddar Meanchey province. It also covers online gambling at a casino property at Poipet in Banteay Meanchey province.
The national government collected US$12 million in taxes from gaming activities in the first six months of 2015, a 20 percent increase over the prior-year period, reported The Cambodia Daily newspaper in July, quoting a Finance Ministry official.
On Thursday the Khmer Times reported that the National Bank of Cambodia announced in early October it is making its first attempt to collect precise, industry-wide data from casinos. The outlet said the bank estimates that income generated by Cambodia’s casinos via non-residents represents about 40 percent of the total amount spent by foreign visitors to the country last year – about US$2 billion.
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