Casino service in SEZs is drafted to enjoy special consumption tax of 15 percent

By Ngoc Anh - May 24, 2018 | 08:01 AM GMT+7

TheLEADEROn May 23, the draft Law on Special Administrative and Economic Zones was discussed by the National Assembly, in which the casino business service in the Units is expected to enjoy a special consumption tax incentive of 15 percent for the first ten years if approved.

According to the explanation report of National Assembly Standing Committee on the fifth working session of the 14th National Assembly, casino business services, electronic games with prizes, betting services enjoying the preferential special consumption tax (SCT) are all associated with highly valuable projects of services, tourism and entertainment complex and identified as priority sectors in the Special Administrative and Economic Zones (SEZs).

Based on international experience, casino business services, electronic games with prizes, betting services are highly profitable business activities, which in the long run are likely to contribute significantly to the state budget, thus the provision of SCT incentives in the draft law is necessary, based on the views of National Assembly Standing Committee.

According to Professor Ha Ton Vinh, a specialist in the field, casino business services, having been a very successful model from Las Vegas to around the world, are now considered as a part of the entertainment complex which can even accommodate families from young to elder people.

Vinh also mentioned that the profit from Macau's casino business was $35 billion, the largest in the world, attracting 32 million tourists.This type of service also delivers the same positive outcome for Las Vegas.

Nevertheless, economist Pham Chi Lan does not agree with the existence of this type of business in the SEZs.

Economist Pham Chi Lan. Photo: BSR

“I do not approve of the casino development in the SEZs, neither in the past nor in the present. There is no investor coming to Las Vegas to invest in high tech and vice versa, thus, offering special incentives to casino services in the SEZs could destroy other purposes in the region," said economist Pham Chi Lan.

Based on the opinions of economist Pham Chi Lan, the draft law should only provide the frame and explanation of SEZs rather than specifying where it should be carried out.

Additionally, preferential conditions should be offered solely to high-tech industries, helping Vietnam to develop a sustainable growth.