At last, after years of waiting, it seems that the Communist Party is willing to “flirt” with sports betting and Casinos for local gamers, for a 3 year pilot period. The Government is not only catering to foreign investor and local demand it will also open a door to collection of taxes much of which are currently lost to casino’s in Cambodia and also illegal betting syndicates in Vietnam.
The Government recently passed Decree No 03/2017/ND-CP which regulates casino operations in Vietnam, although the implementing regulations are still awaited. It is thought that there will be 3 casinos authorised to all local gamers to enter and play, these being Van Doan- in the north; Ho Tram Grand –in the south and Phu Quoc Island. Vietnamese who wish to enter casinos will have to be over the age of 21, have clean police records and have a monthly income in excess of VND 10 million (approx. US$ 440) They will be required to pay an entry fee of VND 1 million per session or VND 25 million per month. In addition they can be refused entry if there are complaints from family members.
How these regulations and requirements will be enforced will hopefully be clearly addressed in the “implementing regulations”.
Also recently enacted is Decree 06/2017/ND-CP which makes sports betting legal in Vietnam and we will see the first official horse racing being held at Madagui about 2.5 hours outside Ho Chi Minh City on March 25th. Again only those over 21 will be allowed to bet and bookmakers cannot be located near schools or public venues for children.
There are several projects applying for licenses for horse racing and cycling (velodrome) as well as greyhound racing stadium in Vung Tau.