Cambodia gaming down but not out after Covid-19, online gaming ban

Cambodia’s gaming industry has taken a major knock from the Covid-19 crisis and last year’s ban on online gaming, but those on the ground are optimistic it will bounce back stronger than ever. The country had been one of the most rapidly expanding jurisdictions in Asia, with about 118 properties in operation at the end of the year, with most centered on the southern coastal town of Sihanoukville.  The economy expanded by 7 percent last year, helped by Chinese investment as part of Beijing’s “one belt, one road” project, providing a strong visitor base for its casinos. It’s expected to contract by 0.3 percent this year, before rebounding 6 percent next, according to Moody’s Investors Service. However, rampant growth, rising crime and pressure from Beijing caused Prime Minister Hun Sen to pull the plug on online operations, raising questions about the viability of many land-based casinos, which were essentially little more than...

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