State-owned land-based gaming facilities operator Holland Casino and the representative body of the gambling industry in the Netherlands, VAN Kansspelen association, have met with government officials to express their concerns regarding the casino closure extension.
Casinos and Arcades Closed Through August
Earlier, the Dutch government, as part of its updated risk mitigation measures, decided to halt from re-opening until September, 1, casinos and gaming arcades in the country that have been closed since mid-March, a decision that has been heavily criticized by the gaming company and the industry association, describing it as “irresponsible”.
“We sincerely hope that you and your loved ones are and will remain in good health. Unfortunately, we cannot greet you personally, because all our establishments are temporarily closed until 31 August, in line with the measures taken by the government and RIVM.”Holland Casino
Holland Casino and VAN Kansspelen met with representatives of the Minister for Legal Protection Sander Dekker to propose alternative options for the government to consider, with both sides agreeing to follow-up meetings on the matter in the near future.
Business at Risk of Losing Revenue and Jobs
Holland Casino expressed its strong belief the decision to extend the casino and arcade closure through August would deeply impact the business and would jeopardize the jobs of more than 8,000 people employed in the sector.
Besides that, both the gambling operator and the association pointed out the lack of gaming options would push players towards illegal forms of gambling online, a hypothesis supported by the recent rise in online bingo and poker reported by the KSA for the period of casino closure. Despite the regulator’s warning for hefty financial sanctions against illegal operators, the channeling of players continued.
Based on that, Holland Casino asked the government to reconsider its decision and allow casinos and arcades to re-open, June 1, albeit with the implementation of new protective measures as for the staff, so for the customers.
In April, Holland Casino issued its 2019 financial results, posting an 11% rise in its revenue year-on-year, to €728.9 million, with more than 6.2 million visitors to their gaming venues. The company also reported a net profit of €67.6 million, 13.6% more than the year before.