Home / Offshore Casinos in Goa Given the Greenlight to renew licenses
Finally some good news has come the way of offshore casinos operating in Goa. The Corporation of the City of Panaji (CCP) has renewed their trade licences. These licences were due to be renewed from March. This marks a step in the right direction for the casinos that are currently docked in Mandovi River, a provisional location until the government can find a more permanent solution.
The offshore casinos have also managed to obtain temporary waiver on payments of several taxes due to the impact of coronavirus. These casinos have also received the go ahead from the Indian state of Goa to resume operations. All of this fares well for a state that has been devastated by the ongoing pandemic. Offshore casinos that were once a major attraction for tourists and locals alike have not managed to operate for quite a few months now, hurting revenues for all concerned parties.
Mayor Surendra Furtado had expressed the desire to renew licenses because quite a few business such as hotel owners and taxi operators had been adversely affected by the closure of the casinos. Renewing the licenses will help the CCP earn earn Rs5.2 million (US$69,655) which will no doubt contribute to the city’s operating budget. The renewal will hold until March 31, 2021, after which the offshore casinos will be required to apply for the license again.
The renewal of licenses also marks a U-turn for the CCP as just last year it had voted against it. While it is in fact true that associated businesses would be adversely affected if the licenses were not renewed, legal experts have a different opinion on the matter. They believe that lack of renewal would have led to a lawsuit against the state which would cost the it quite a bit of money.
Regardless, certain measures will need to be taken to ensure the safety of the customers. The roads leading up to the casinos will have to be rezoned. New ‘no parking and no stopping zones’ will have to be created and even a private towing firm will be required to ensure everyone’s safety during such troubling times.