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New Crown Casino Will Not Open in Sydney Before 2019

Posted at 10:00 2013-03-12 by Matthew Pitt

The New South Wales Premier Barry O’Farrell has reiterated that he will not allow a new casino in to open in Sydney until 2019 according to a report by Bloomberg.com.

Crown Ltd. had planned to open a casino and hotel in the Barangaroo development site where it hoped to attract high-rolling Asian gamblers. However, O’Farrell has stated that Crown Ltd will not be able to open for business until the end of 2019.

“Any new VIP-only facility will not be operational before the existing exclusivity agreement expires on 14 November 2019,” said O’Farrell through an emailed statement.

The exclusivity agreement mentioned cost the Echo Star’s former owner, Tabcorp Holdings Ltd, A$100 million in 2007, an astronomical sum of money it paid to the New South Wales government in exchange for a 12-year license to operate Sydney’s only casino.

This may not be the end of the matter because a report in the Australian Financial Review claimed the Crown’s property would not require a traditional casino license as it will only be offering its services to so-called VIP gamblers. Therefore, one could argue that opening the Crown complex would not contravene any exclusivity ruling.

Back in October 2012, Premier O’Farrell moved the Crown Hotel Resort proposal to Stage 2 of three and welcomed the investment Crown Ltd were prepared to make.

“Crown’s submission is that the development would see up to $1 billion invested in NSW and would result in more than 1,200 jobs,” said O’Farrell. “As Sydney’s first six-star hotel, it would be a world-class tourist facility which would help us compete with other global destinations particularly in the lucrative and booming Asian tourism market.”

At the bottom of the October 2012 statement it clearly says, “the NSW Government would honour the Star’s existing exclusivity agreement which meant any new casino would not be operational before 14 November, 2019.

Interesting times could be on the horizon!

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