The tax contribution from the 17 casinos in South Korea reportedly fell by 82.4% on a comparative basis last year to approximately $70.7 million largely as a direct result of the turmoil associated with the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
According to a report from GGRAsia citing official information from the country’s National Gambling Control Commission regulator, the 674-room Kangwon Land Casino venue accounted for just over 73% of the aggregated tax tally at around $51.8 million although this represented a decline of 83.3% when compared with the $309.5 million chalked up for 2019. The source detailed that this 21-year-old enterprise is the sole South Korean property where locals are permitted to gamble alongside foreigners and recently saw its second-quarter gross gaming revenues swell by 488% year-on-year to roughly $176.6 million.
Last year’s tax tally from Kangwon Land Casino was nevertheless reportedly more than twice higher than the combined figure for the nation’s 16 foreigner-only casinos, which decreased by 79.7% year-on-year to just over $18.9 million. The development operated by the state-owned Kangwon Land Incorporated purportedly moreover saw it annual provision to a range of charitable funds slump by 8% to about $232.2 million with the collective $46.5 million handed over by its compatriots having equated to a crash of some 60.7%.
GGRAsia reported that the gambling sector in South Korea additionally encompasses local lotteries as well as wagering on horse, cycling, boat and sossaum contests. As such and the source explained that Kangwon Land Casino, which is located in eastern Gangwon Province around a four-hour train ride from downtown Seoul, had accounted for 14.8% of the nation’s total 2020 tax revenues from gaming, which came in some 82.9% down on a comparative basis at $349.1 million.
The government of South Korea reportedly instituted several coronavirus-related casino closures last year as it struggled to contain a pandemic that has so far been directly linked to the deaths of over 2,300 locals. Gambling-friendly venues have since also purportedly been obliged to follow a slew of associated public health regulations that encompass capacity limitations, testing regimes and social distancing protocols.
GGRAsia finished by citing a May revelation from the country’s Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism in explaining that combined 2020 visits to South Korean casinos had tumbled by 71.3% year-on-year to slightly beyond 1.7 million. This government department purportedly later revealed that the same twelve-month period had seen the aggregated turnover from these venues sink by 64.5% on a comparative basis to something close to $1.2 billion, which is around the same tally as was chalked up by the over 40 casinos in Macau for July alone.