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Dicey business Declining income hits gambling venues

Wheel of shrinking fortune: a roulette table at a Zurich casino

(Keystone)

Income at Switzerland’s 21 casinos has shrunk by a third since 2007, according to the Swiss Casino Association. 

Casino proceeds continued to dwindle in 2015, down by 4% to CHF681 million ($689 million), it said on Tuesday. Along with the declining income, the government and cantons receive a smaller slice of the pie: CHF320 million to the public sector, or a third less than nearly a decade ago. 

The industry group says a new gaming law is partly to blame for the lack of competitiveness of Swiss casinos. But in recent years, the weak euro also has created problems for Swiss casinos, particularly in Italian-speaking Ticino, where the highest concentration of casinos in Europe are located. 

Ticino’s proximity to Italy, which only has a few similar casinos, also helps bring in customers from across the border. The government benefits from the casinos because they are obliged to pay part of their profits to it, an average of 50%. 

The casino association is also calling on the Swiss authorities to block access to illegal foreign online games and to allow casinos to offer sporting betting services and lottery products.

swissinfo.ch and agencies


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