Vietnam urged to do more to attract foreign casino investment

    Vietnam’s government needs to do more to attract major foreign investors into its casino sector and a current draft bill being considered is unlikely to prove satisfactory, Professor Augustine Ha Ton Vinh writes in VietnamNet Bridge.
    He points out that the most recent draft decree continues to require investors to commit $4 billion and show they have the financial capacity to invest according to their commitment. He adds that the figure is most likely taken from the model used by Singapore when choosing two investors for its integrated resorts.
    However, Singapore and Vietnam are very different markets, he wrote. And while the Singapore government allowed the resorts to be built in prime locations, Vietnam is asking for a huge commitment for a project “in a random location and without careful calculation.”
    The professor also said the draft stipulates that an investor must disburse at least half of the total committed capital to receive a license to open a casino. Existing resorts had not been required to make such a commitment and new investors therefore may find the requirement unfair.
    Plans to assess the competence and financial capacity of Vietnamese nationals seeking to gamble is also impractical, he adds.
    “The regulations as stipulated by the draft are a hindrance to investors.
    Having worked with investors for many years, especially those in the casino industry, I hope the new and revised decree on integrated resorts will meet investors’ demands,” he said.