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Samoa Gambling Authority positive about casino impact

Samoa’s Gambling Authority says the recipients of two casino licenses to operate on Upolu have strong financial backing and solid reputations in tourism.

Aggie Grey’s Beach Resort near Faleolo airport has six months to set up a casino operation with 12 gaming tables and up to 85 electronic gaming machines.

And the Exhibition Tourism Group, or ETC, from China proposes a 500-room hotel resort casino development to be built within three years.

A spokesperson for the Gambling Authority, Robbie Kearney, says ETC is the third largest travel company in China, but it has yet to secure a lease for 500 acres of land.

He says the casinos will boost Samoa’s economy and tourist numbers significantly, and increase employment and other benefits for locals.

“We’re hopeful that the casinos can also then begin to put on shows, and then people can come and there will be other entertainment that’s available there as well. So I don’t think that we are looking to become or have the evils of gambling consume the population, as some doomsayers seem to be indicating. We are looking to have quite a balanced integrated casino resort operation for both of the enterprises that are going to be licensed.”

Spokesperson for Samoa’s Gambling Authority, Robbie Kearney.



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