India: Goa and Sikkim casinos given green light to reopen at 50% capacity

Posted:: Oct 29, 2020 16:02 Category: Asia , Casino , Posted by

Casinos in Goa and Sikkim will restart operations from November 1st, under government imposed regulations, in bid to kickstart tourism activity

Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant stated, “Casinos will start from November 1. We have given them permission. They will have to follow all the SOPs as issued to them by the Home Department. They will have to operate with 50 percent capacity. We need to promote tourism activity.” As an economic relief measure, Pramod Sawant said that instead of paying annual fees, casino operators could now pay for their license fees on a monthly basis.   

The news was released without any notice so Goa casino operators have told the local media that they would not be able to pick up operations as soon as November 1st, and will take several weeks of preparation for reopening, taking into account that numerous staff have returned to their hometowns. Goa Casino | SiGMA News

Goa has six operational offshore casinos anchored in the Mandovi River, off Panaji, and about ten land-based venues operating from resorts located in the state’s coastal belt. 

Meanwhile, the authorities in Sikkim, in northeast India, have also selected November 1st to reopen their casinos, which were also suspended since March. 

Delta Corp, the largest casino operator in India with operations in both Goa and Sikkim, has announced it will restart operations in November under the conditions stipulated by the authorities.   Delta Corp | SiGMA News

It said in a statement that the “casino in Sikkim will resume operations from November 1, 2020, in accordance with applicable safety norms prescribed by the Government of Sikkim and Central Government.”  

Delta Corp acquired a 45% stake, an estimated $2.1 million investment in Waterways Shipyard Pvt Ltd, on India’s west coast, that is expected to be completed by December 31. 

Last month, the floating casinos were granted another six months extension by the Goa state cabinet(approved from 1st October, 2020 till 31st March, 2021) to continue operations in Mandovi River, between Panaji and Betim, as they are currently unable to identify any alternative location where they can operate.

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