Nepal casino industry stirs, but local operators continue push for change

Nepal’s casino industry is showing signs of life after shutting down for nearly a year for failing to comply with new regulations, but the recent opening of two foreign-funded ventures may be masking continuing underlying problems. In early February, Hong Kong-based Silver Heritage Limited (SHL) opened The Millionaire’s Club & Casino at the five-star Hotel Shangri-La in Kathmandu, becoming the first casino to come under Nepal’s new gaming regulations, while India’s Mahjong Entertainment, which operates Casino Mahjong at the five-star Hotel Soaltee in Kathmandu followed suit, opening its doors to gamblers on February 6. However, local operators continue to lobby the government for further concessions on the new gaming law, while state officials remain adamant that they will give no further ground. They also fear the reopening of the casinos may prompt the government to backtrack on agreed amendments. “Since the two casinos reopened after complying with the new regulations, the issue...

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