The government granted 13 casino licences from January to April, bringing the total number of licences in the industry to 163, according to the Ministry of Finance.
Speaking to Khmer Times, Ros Phearun, deputy director-general at the ministry’s financial industry department, said the number of casino licences issued by the government has risen to 163, adding that 91 of them are located in Preah Sihanouk province.
“We have granted a lot of licences, but there are actually only 51 casinos in operation. The rest are now being built, while some have halted operations,” he said, noting that, “the rise in the number of casinos reflects the increase in tourists, particularly Chinese.”
According to Mr Phearun, last year the government collected $46 million from the gaming industry. The figure is expected to reach $70 million this year.
Mr Phearun said a draft of the gaming law has already been completed at the ministry level and will be submitted to the Council of Ministers soon.
“With this law, we hope that to attract more big casino investors and increase revenue from the industry. I think that, as a result of this law, revenue collected from the industry will double,” he added.