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FeaturesGovt. earns Rs 1.58 bn from Casinos

Govt. earns Rs 1.58 bn from Casinos

The government has collected Rs 1,580.4 million as tax revenue, during the past five years, from 810 casinos in the country, Parliament was told yesterday. Deputy Finance Minister Geethanjana Gunawardena, responding to a question raised by UNP Kurunegala District MP Daysiri Jayasekera said that those casinos were currently under the registration of the local government bodies.

Asked to inform the House of an annual breakdown of the total sum, the Deputy Minister said that tax revenue stood at Rs 196.4 million, in 2006 Rs 282 million, in 2007 Rs 268 million, in 2008 Rs 270 million, in 2009 Rs 269 million and in 2010 Rs 295 million.

Those casinos had functioned under the provisions of the Gaming and Betting Act of 1988, the Deputy Minister said adding that the provisions of the recently passed Casino and Gambling Act 2010 would be applicable for them since January 2012.

So far none of these casinos had been registered under the new Act, he said.

Asked whether the government had plans to declare a separate street and area for the casino playing tourists and locals, the Deputy Ministers responded in negative.

By Saman Indrajith

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