Russia’s Sochi makes play as would-be gambling Mecca

    Published in: Latest IntelligenceSochi, home to the 2014 Winter Olympics, is gearing up to be a new gambling hub for Southern Russia, after receiving approval from President Vladimir Putin earlier this year, but some experts are dubious about its chances of success.The problem in finding the right location, coupled with political tensions and competition from both neighbouring countries and other Russian gambling zones may all hinder development.Putin signed the bill creating a gambling zone in Sochi and in the newly-annexed Crimea in July. Gambling was banned in Russia in 2009 apart from in the specially designated areas, where progress so far has been slow. However, authorities are determined to cash in on the newly built infrastructure that was put in place for the Olympic games. In November, they organized Sochi Gaming Week, gathering experts in the gaming industry to discuss the zone’s future. US-based casino company Century Casinos CEO Peter Hoetzinger...

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