Monday 21. November, 2016

Queensland Government Considering Regional Casino

The Queensland government has revealed they are in the middle of confidential discussions to determine whether there is interest in the development of an integrated casino resort for regional Queensland.

According to a report in The Brisbane Times, the discussions are part of preliminary research by the government on the potential for the development. Cities that may be considered would include Cairns, Rockhampton, Townsville, Mackay, the Gold Coast and the Sunshine Coast. The government team is meeting with local governments, casino and hotel operators, financiers, construction businesses and building developers.

“Team members will include Treasury and Office of Liquor and Gaming Regulation officials who will outline the state’s laws and policies and also the strict probity requirements,” a spokeswoman for State Development Minister, Anthony Lynham said to The Brisbane Times.

The research will be collated and presented to the Queensland Government in 2017, after which it will decide whether to move ahead with the proposal.

On November 3, Dr Lynham told parliament, “They have prepared a participant’s package which provides an overview of the opportunity and government parameters.”

“As many as 12 different groups over the past 18 months have declared an interest.”

Dr Lynham said that any proposals would need to meet strict criteria. The development would need to be within a 70km radius of the city centre of a major region with no less than 150,000 people. It would need to have access to transport networks and be close to a functional international airport and there would need to be existing tourism infrastructure. It would need to include significant capital investment and construction would need to begin within 18 months of closing the contract.

“We are only interested in developments that will draw international tourists to Queensland and create jobs,” stated Dr Lynham.

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