Coherent Identifier About this item: 20.500.12592/vn91z2

ASIAN ROULETTE - Criminogenic casinos and illicit trade in environmental commodities in South East Asia

1 August 2022

Summary

In other words, criminality is pervasive at all stages of a casino’s life cycle: from the deforestation, environmental degradation and biodiversity impacts that take place during the construction of the physical casinos, to the sale of protected and endangered species on casino menus and the laundering of the proceeds of envi- ronment crimes that happen once the casinos are up and running, to the. [...] While the United States is still the largest gambling market by revenue, Macau overtook Las Vegas and the state of Nevada in terms of value of revenue receipts 2010.6 In contrast, the Asia Pacific region has been the largest and fastest-growing market for gambling in the world.7 Importantly, the markets in North America and Asia – each independently important in their own right – are also intrinsi. [...] After the closure of the Mong La casinos by Chinese authorities, the chairman reportedly moved his investment interests to the Golden Boten City SEZ and the Golden Triangle SEZ in Laos.55 The rise of ‘offshore’ online casinos Eager to tap into the Chinese market, President Rodrigo Duterte introduced the Philippine offshore gambling operators (POGOs) model for online casinos in 2016. [...] The casinos in the Golden Boten City and the Golden Triangle SEZ in Laos are clearly inspired by the casinos in Mong La, Myanmar, from the administrative structure down to the street signs.72 The businesses, involving shops, restaurants, pharmacies and mini markets are mainly operated by Chinese nationals, signs are in Mandarin, Chinese yuan is the main currency used and even clocks are set to Bei. [...] The examples of the high-profile arrests, as well as the efforts of multiple national level tasks forces in Asia and beyond, financial investigation units and others government actors, collectively suggest that there is a growing realization of the magnitude of the problem and of the need to take action.

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