Cambodia halts online gambling in 91 casinos after ban

By Owain Flanders

Cambodian authorities have shut down online and arcade gambling operations in 91 of the country’s casinos since a ban on the industry came into effect on 1 January.

In August last year, the Cambodian Government announced it would no longer issue licenses to online gambling businesses, and would not permit the renewal of any existing licenses once they expired.

All existing licenses expired at the turn of the year, bringing the planned industry ban into effect.

Ros Phearun, Deputy Director General of the Ministry of Economy and Finance (MEF) in Cambodia, has confirmed that a committee comprising MEF officials, national police and military police officers has been inspecting the country’s casinos since the start of the year.

The majority of Cambodia’s 118 casinos have shut down online operations as a result.

Speaking with reporters, Phearun said: “I can say that all arcade gambling operations in the kingdom completely ceased after the ban.

“After ceasing online gambling, some casinos are still operating for one or two months to see if they can make earnings, but we believe more casinos will cease their business.”

Yov Khemara, Director of the Sihanoukville Provincial Labour Department, stated that 23 casino closures in the region had left 7,700 people unemployed.


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