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Nepal – Pokhara Grande shuts up shop

By - 5 August 2013

Another casino has closed in Nepal due to the increased government royalty fee and higher entry costs with Casino Pokhara Grande closing its doors in the Lake City.
Casino manager Shyam Sundar Khadka of the luxurious five-star hotel located 1.5 km from Lake Phewa Taal, confirmed the decision to close was taken following agreement between the management and workers with up to 220 members of staff losing their jobs as a result. The continued struggle to pay Royalty Fess along with a recent doubling of the entry fee, designed to stop local splaying as much, were said to be to blame for the closure.
Hari Khadka, Chairperson of the All Nepal Hotels and Restaurants Workers Association, said: “The hotel was earning just around R6m a month, but in comparison the cost of operating the casino R11.5m. So the decision was imperative.”

He criticised security personnel for harassing the casino management and tourists by launching inopportune raids.

Casinos in Nepal have run into problems other the last few years following their failure to keep up with royalty payments with the gaming sector now less than half its size of two years ago.
The remaining gaming properties will be Casino Everest, Casino Tara, Casino Rad and Casino Venus. They all repaid the deficit built up by non-payment of royalties worth more than R80m following a crackdown by the Public Accounts Committee.
Following the initial disputes over the fees, the Nepal government nullified the operating licence of NRC, which operated four casinos; Casino Nepal, Casino Anna, Casino Everest and Casino Tara.

Star Management who operated the Casino Shangri-La at Hotel ShangrilaNepal was also forced to close.

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