A spokesperson for Paradise Co Ltd, an operator of foreigner-only casinos in South Korea, has told GGRAsia the country’s government has not so far asked the foreigner-only sector’s operators to close their gaming venues due to a recent spike in Covid-19 infections in the country.
“Until now the government – the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism – hasn’t ordered for the casino operators to close down the gaming venues,” said the person.
The Paradise Co spokesperson added, referring to local rules to prevent further spread of Covid-19:” If the social distance level goes up to level three, the government may recommend to temporarily close the venues.”
The promoter of Kangwon Land, the only casino resort in South Korea where the country’s nationals are allowed to gamble, has once more temporarily closed its casino due to Covid-19, citing the fact that the country had moved to a level-two protocol for virus containment, amid a recent increase in cases in South Korea.
According to data released on Monday by South Korea’s Ministry of Health and Welfare, the country had 268 new cases of Covid-19 infection on Sunday – including eight imported cases – taking the country’s tally of confirmed infections to 17,665, with 309 deaths among the confirmed cases. The capital Seoul has accounted for 16.9 percent of confirmed cases.
Yonhap news agency reported that more than 2,200 Covid-19 cases nationally, had been identified over a nine-day period up to Saturday.
Paradise Co has an interest in the Paradise City casino resort (pictured) at Incheon. The firm runs three other casino complexes. They are: Walkerhill in Seoul; Jeju Grand on Jeju Island; and Busan Casino in the southern port city of Busan.
The firm had closed down on March 24 its four casino sites for two weeks, in line with South Korea’s effort at curbing the further spread of the Covid-19 pandemic in the country. Some of the company’s non-gaming offerings – such as entertainment venues – were also closed. The group reopened its casino on Jeju island on April 13. It later resumed operations at its remaining three gaming venues on April 20.
Paradise Co saw its second-quarter net loss rise to nearly KRW31.88 billion (US$26.8 million), widened from KRW2.46 billion in the opening three months of 2020, and from KRW2.06 billion a year earlier. In a presentation published on August 11, the company said its gaming and non-gaming sales plunged amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
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