The British casino market is struggling to function under twin problems of
global recession and political 'dithering', according to a report in the Times
While the UK gambling market went through major changes last year
following the National Gambling Act of 2005, very little of the great plans that
were announced with such fanfare actually came to fruition.
At the time, the UK government lured big names in the global gambling
industry to invest their millions in the country's growing casino market,
including Las Vegas Sands, MGM Mirage and Harrah's International - all top firms
based in Vegas, with operations all over the world.
Unfortunately, public panic over gambling addiction led the government to
downsize its plans, instead offering 17 gambling licenses to locations around
the country and planning one giant casino instead of many that were envisioned
However, the new Prime Minister Gordon Brown was not keen on keeping any
promises to Manchester, which won the bid for the mega casino and he, too, cut
plans once more to okay only 16 small to large casino licenses.
Yet, the Times Onlines notes, these casinos are also far from becoming a
reality. In fact, only one of them is even close to opening its doors to the UK
gambling public any time in the future. A joint venture between Genting Stanley
and the National Exhibition Center may see a 90 million GBP complex opening up
near the center soon.
Around the capital, some of the casinos run by top name companies are
struggling to remain open. The average gambler has less to spend on this form of
entertainment, while a non-smoking law means that more people than ever are
seeking alternative gambling options, such as internet gambling.
With all these facts, it is hoped that the government will come to its senses
and decrease (instead of increase!) gaming duty and focus on assisting the
struggling UK gambling industry.