- South Korea experiencing substantial year-on-year increase in gambling revenues
- With more casinos on the way, is nation a new Asian gaming giant?
South Korea might become the next gaming force to be reckoned with in Asia.
The country saw a significant 7.7% year on year increase in gaming revenues in 2016, bringing it to a total of $17.6 billion (KRW20.3 trillion). This number includes lottery sales, casino gambling, and betting. What’s even more impressive about this figure is the fact it doesn’t include revenues from the foreigner-only casinos.
Of 17 casinos scattered throughout the country, there is only one that admits local players. The Kangwon Land casino reported a profit of around $394 million (KRW455 billion) in 2016, with a total turnover of $1.5 billion (KRW1.7 trillion), which is an increase of almost 4% compared to 2015.
Lottery sales have seen the biggest year-on-year increase of 9.3%, totalling $8 billion (KRW9.3 trillion). The next in line was betting on cycling, which increased 1.7%, while horse racing operations sales experienced a small growth of 0.2%.
South Korea has government backing to grow into Asian giant
According to some experts, these boosted gambling numbers can be attributed to economic depression the country has been experiencing. They believe that economic hardships push people towards gambling more for financial and other reasons.
Whatever the reason, South Korea is in the midst of a big casino expansion, which could end up turning the country into another Asian gambling giant. With all the existing casinos, two more venues, Jeju Shinhwa World and Paradise City, are set to open for business this year. Both of these casino resorts will offer a rich selection of casino games and slots together with numerous non-gambling related services.
The country’s government has granted more permissions for similar venues, so there are more gambling complexes in the pipeline in the years to come. The strong casino expansion could improve South Korea’s tourism and the overall financial situation, pumping more money into the country’s economy.
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