Vietnamese discuss extension of legal gambling

Vietnamese discuss extension of legal gambling

Thursday, August 27, 2015 Totally Gaming
Gambling is currently restricted to lottery games and foreigner-only casinos

Lawmakers in Vietnam have called for further legalisation of gambling claiming that current laws are not being enforced.

Politicians met on Tuesday to discuss amendments to the country’s Penal Code, with some hoping for an extension of gambling some 70 years after it was criminalised in the south-east Asian country.

Foreign nationals are allowed to gamble in casinos in Vietnam, and Pham Xuan Thuong, representing Thai Binh, argued that gambling is already widespread and legal options should be extended to the country’s own 90 million citizens.

The Thanh Nien Daily newspaper reported that Thuong said that since the country’s lottery is a form of gambling lawmakers should organise other gambling activities in a “sensible and manageable way”, while others said that illegal gambling is rife and that some travel overseas to gamble rather than spending their money in Vietnam.

The Thanh Nien Daily said that lawmakers made their recommendations for allowing gambling after government officials suggested changes to gambling laws. The alterations would see a raising of the wagering limit by which individuals could face prosecution from $88 (€78.3) to $220, while the possible custodial sentence for those found guilty would be increased from three months to one year.

Las Vegas Sands is among the gaming giants that have expressed an interest in building an integrated resort in Vietnam, but only if locals can play.

Gambling is prohibited by Articles 248 and 249 of the Vietnamese Penal Code.

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