Should casino gamblers be required to prove their incomes?

By Viet Thanh   February 13, 2023 | 04:43 pm PT
Should casino gamblers be required to prove their incomes?
People play at a poker table. Illustration photo by Pexels
A draft regulation would compel Vietnamese who want to gamble at local casinos to prove that their monthly income is at least VND10 million ($423.68). VnExpress readers weigh in on the proposal.

"Why only VND10 million? With this amount of money, even if you spend frugally, it’s only enough for one person to live a month. Someone who wants to go to the casino has to have much higher income in order to have enough money left for entertainment after paying for all life necessities."

"There is no country that requires casino players to prove their income. If there’s such a requirement, no one will come to the casino.... If we look at how Casino Phu Quoc allowed Vietnamese to play as a trial, we see that after three years of operation their ticket sales reached VND140 billion. That number might seem big, but it’s small compared to casinos abroad.

I believe the amount of money that Vietnamese bring with them abroad to casinos is much bigger than the amount of money they spend at domestic casinos. Anyone who's ever played, including economists and veteran businesspeople... would look at the data and know why Vietnamese casinos keep losing money."
Nguyen Tuan

"The problem here is not about the amount of money, as no amount of money would ever be enough. The reason why a threshold of VND10 million is being proposed is because such a threshold is deemed appropriate given the average monthly income of those in Vietnam. Those who already have stable jobs, with monthly incomes above VND10 million, would play the casinos purely for entertainment... If there is no such condition, those without jobs would borrow money to play the casino only to lose it all, burdening their families and society."
Trung Tan

"This matter might seem simple, but it’s something we’ve been struggling with for a long time. In order for casino players to be legally bound, this is what we could try:

1. Use a kind of identification card for anyone who’s eligible to enter the casino. Such a card would be managed by either the police, tax or finance authorities. Card holders would be able to enter any casino in Vietnam that’s properly managed.

2. Issuing cards would require players to prove their incomes by tax records and other documents. The card should be effective for 5 years before expiring. If someone does not want their married partner to be able to play at the casino, all one would have to do is file documents stating their wishes and proving their marriage, and the card would be rendered ineffective.

3. Every time a player wins something, they would need to use their cards to manage the prizes, so there would be transparency when data is requested by different parties (either their own family members or authorities). Authorities can also determine the maximum amount of money an individual can use for casino-playing during a specific time period, such as per month or per year, depending how their cards are managed."
Linh Lai

The opinions expressed here are personal and do not necessarily match VnExpress's viewpoints. Send your opinions here.
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