By the Caribbean Journal staff
Casino gaming will be coming to Bermuda as announced late last year, the government said this week.
The island’s government said it had decided to “proceed with the establishment of legalized casino gaming through the parliamentary process” after initially planning to put the issue to a popular referendum.
In a statement issued this week, Tourism Minister Shawn Crockwell said he was “confident it was the right decision for Bermuda.”
“We engaged industry leaders as well as consulted with past and current leaders of jurisdictions that have already implemented casino gaming and believe we are on the right track in creating an industry that will be beneficial to the island whilst limiting adverse effects,” he said “One of the benefits of getting into this industry late is that we can learn from the mistakes of other jurisdictions.”
He said the territory would be following the “integrated casino resort model,” in line with those employed in places like Aruba and Singapore,
That is, Bermudian casinos would be located only in select resorts.
Crockwell said the government would begin a series of events to provide “awareness and education” on gaming in Bermuda, with the first set to begin on Jan. 27.
“Casino Gaming is not a panacea but a much needed amenity for our tourism product,” he said. “We must augment our tourism offerings and we must enhance our tourism infrastructure. The data shows that with the implementation of responsible and well regulated casino gaming we can attract new high-end hotel brands and additional hotel inventory.”