Entrepreneur of Macau — Special Administrative Region of China — Lawrence Ho has become the first Russian-known casino operator, at a time when northern neighbor China enters into a fierce competition for the major Asian players who have made Macau the gambling capital of the world "- says
According to a source familiar with the transaction, the company Summit Ascent Holdings Ltd., Controlled by Ho, has signed an agreement the opening of a casino on the outskirts of Vladivostok. Casino resort in Primorye — the vast eastern region bordering with China and Korea — is due to open in the second half of 2014. It will be one of the first such place in Russia after the ban casinos outside of the four special zones in 2009. The scope of the project are still being discussed, the source said.
"This is positive news for the Russian casino industry, which is rarely the focus of attention of the bosses of the gambling business and investors because of fears of corruption and the lack of a clear structure of the regular gambling" — note Yvonne Lee and Prudence Ho.
But some analysts say that the proximity of Russia to the north-east of China, low taxes and relatively low minimum investment requirements may be sufficient reasons to venture out. According to analysts’ estimates, companies can take as little as a couple of hundred million dollars to enter the Russian market, compared to the billions that have spread casino operators on new resorts in Macau, the article says.
"Many people do not realize that Vladivostok — this Asian direction, which turned out to Russia"- Said Dean Macomber, president of the American company Macomber International Inc., Which advises on the Russian casino industry.
According to the report, prepared last year American Gaming Market Advisors for regional government, Revenue from gaming establishments in Primorye may originally reach 1.2 billion dollars a year and grow to 5.2 billion in the next decade. Taxes make up only 3-7% of the profits, which is much lower than the 39% in Macau, conclude correspondents.
In writing the article was attended by Kate O’Keeffe and Greg White