South Korea

Casino revenues rose 2.1 percent for operator Grand Korea Leisure Co. to 129 billion won ($116 million) in the second quarter from the April-June period last year. Casino visitor numbers rose 5 percent to 415,000 as a 24.2 percent rise in Chinese gamblers offset a 19.5 percent drop in Japanese traffic. Corporate net profits rose 23.5 percent to 30.1 billion won. The company is seeking to open foreigner-only duty-free stores to complement its foreigner-only casinos.

Incheon officials said the proposed $290 billion Eightcity mega-resort project had collapsed after hotelier Kempinski AG, a member of the development group, failed to meet an extended deadline to deposit $40 million. The consortium, which also includes Korean Air Lines Co.

 

Caesars Entertainment Corp. and partner Lippo Group Ltd. each said they are still considering whether to appeal the decision by South Korea’s Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism to reject their consortium’s preliminary casino license application in June. The consortium has 90 days to appeal. “The consortium believes that its application met the requirements of the Enforcement Decree,” the group told AGB.

 

 

The government will move forward with legislation to govern the operation of foreigner-only casinos on South Korea-based cruise ships in a bid to help both the cruise and casino industries, officials said. Casino operator Grand Korea Leisure Co. has been eyeing the possibility of launching two casino cruises, but has been hoping that locals would be allowed to access the casinos. South Koreans are barred from entry to all but one of the country's 17 casinos .

 

 

South Korean military officials said that 230 enlisted troops and low-ranking officers have logged onto online gambling sites while on base this year, up from 18 last year. The soldiers primarily used computers that had been set up for educational use. The military said it will strengthen punishments and prevention measures. 

 

 

A Seoul judge has sentenced Kim Yong-man, a prominent television host and comedian, to eight months in jail and two years' probation for illegal sports gambling. Kim had admitted to betting 1 billion won ($871,000) on sports betting websites since 2008. Kim had entered a guilty plea and said after his trial that he would not appeal.

 

 

 

Illegal gambling turnover in South Korea is expected to reach 75 trillion won ($67.7 billion) this year, according to a report by the National Assembly Budget Office, up from 53 trillion won in 2008. Horse racing is the country's leading form of legal gambling, with legal gambling generating 17 trillion won in total turnover in 2011.

 

 

The finance ministry recommended that lottery ticket sales next year be capped at 3.61 trillion won ($3.23 billion), up 3.6 percent from this year's 3.49 trillion won limit. The ministry projects next year's sales will reach 3.31 trillion won. Sales rached 3.19 trillion won last year.

 

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