Kangwon Land opens; GKL remains closed

The two big state-run gambling firms, Kangwon Land and Grand Korea Leisure, have just taken divergent paths on the Covid-19 crisis.

Kangwon Land reopened its doors at the beginning of this week with a capacity limit on the casino floor of 1,200 people. It’s latest closure had lasted two months after being closed for a much longer period of five months in the spring and summer of 2020.

Meanwhile, Grand Korea Leisure announced that its Seoul casinos would remain closed until March 1, having originally suspended operations on November 24 of last year.

Kangwon Land also released its annual financial report for 2020.

Last year, Kangwon Land reported an operating loss of KRW431.6 billion (US$388 million) on a consolidated basis, which was its first annual loss since its founding.

Even the non-gaming division’s annual sales fell 58.3 percent to KRW74.2 billion.

The total number of visitors to Kangwon Land last year was 590,265, a 79.3 percent year-on-year decrease.

Michael Penn is a journalist and scholar based in Tokyo, Japan. As a journalist, he both writes print news articles and produces news videos. On the video side, he has several years of experience doing it all by himself: reporting the stories, shooting the video, and editing the packages. As a scholar, the bulk of his past publications have been about Japan's modern relations with the Islamic world.