Goa is known to be the smallest Indian state with a population of about a 1.5million. However, with the rise of casinos in the state, Goa boasts an economic development far above the nation’s average.
Casino gaming in Goa is no doubt one of the driving forces behind India’s economy since its operation in 1992. It has become the nation’s major revenue and tax contributor. Goa casinos have experienced steady financial growth which is evident in their income.
For FY 2012-2013, Goa casinos contributed a total of Rs 135.45 crore to the government which includes direct tax and other revenues. At the time, each land-based casino contributed Rs 2.5 crore annually. Currently, it pays Rs 4 crore every year and is expected to increase drastically with Goa’s transition to a land-based casino.
These land-based casinos are about 12 in number. The popular ones include Casino Carnival, Deltin Zuri, and Deltin Royale.
According to a report by CM Pramond Sawant, Goa received Rs 330 crore from the casino industry in 2018. By FY 2019, the tax revenue increased to Rs 414 crore. This was the last and highest financial year record to date.
While the land-based casinos have been contributing to the state’s economy, online casinos have also been making waves in Goa and India at large. Following the recent lockdown experiences and the entry ban on locals, almost all Goa online casinos have garnered a huge player base.
Goa online casinos have also experienced a big shift in their revenue due to the covid-19 Pandemic, as locals sourced for safe casino platforms. A report from Deloitte India 2021 estimated online casino income at ₹22, 500 crores.
The online gambling scene has made a huge impact in curbing money laundering and corruption. It has indeed regulated the deficiencies in the Goa casino market, thereby creating jobs, funding, maintaining a secure gaming environment, etc.
Some factors that have aided the boost in Goa casinos’ wealth are an increased number of users and tourists visiting.
Most land-based casinos are situated in hotels and resorts with bars, pools, restaurants, and spas centers around them. Entertainment activities like live music shows, dance competitions, celebrity performances, and night parties are often hosted there too. These become a key attraction to tourists as they are happy to visit Goa for an affordable experience.
To this end, tourism is considered additional revenue for Goa casinos. It contributes about 30% of the state’s GDP. The local Government plans on setting up hotels alongside other government-owned establishments in North Goa even though Goa casinos are private-owned.
On average, Goa casinos record three million tourists annually and fifteen thousand players daily. These figures add up to the increased amount of revenue generated by Goa casinos.
As earlier mentioned, an increased number of users are a major factor in promoting the Goa casino economy. Scientific research shows that at least half of the natives of Goa have gambled once in their lives. A survey carried out also proves that 45% of the men in Goa are gamblers.
Furthermore, the state ranks high on almost all socio-economic parameters. It reports a 62% population of urban residents and a 90% average literacy rate.
In a bid to get more players, some casinos hire Bollywood stars as ambassadors to promote their brand as the best and safest gambling platform. This helps them attract players of different kinds. The value of an average player is revealed to be between $200-$300. Therefore, the higher number of players at each casino, the higher the revenue.
Again, the need to make sustainable long-term plans has aided Goa residents and her government in maximizing profit. As a result, preventing financial bankruptcy and increasing her revenue. Also, the regulation of gambling activities by local authorities in the state is a huge plus to the casino’s revenue.
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