Gaming revenues total R18.1-bn: Review Commission

GROSS gaming revenues have doubled in real terms between 2001 and 2009 and now stand at R15.9 billion — R18.1 billion if the lottery is included, according to the Gambling Review Commission.

The commission was established by Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies in December 2009 and he tabled its report in parliament on Wednesday.

The report says that in 2009, the sector generated R1.5 billion in tax revenues for provincial governments and is the second highest generator of “own revenues” for these governments.

In addition, the national lottery generated R1.4 billion in funds for good causes.

The sector accounts for substantial employment, with a total of 56,958 direct jobs created and sustained in the industry.

The casino industry alone accounts for 51,317 jobs (90%), 85% of the GGR and 80 percent of the tax revenues.

The casino industry in South Africa is well run and compares favourably with casinos anywhere else in the world, the report says.

A limit of 40 casinos in the country has been set in legislation and 37 licences have been issued, of which 36 are operational.

Casinos have made significant contributions to infrastructure development, with a cumulative capital expenditure of R18.8 billion as at March 2009.

The commission recommends that the current limit of 40 casinos in the country is appropriate and should be maintained in future.

There is a need to monitor the growth of slot machines and tables at casinos.

The Commission recommends that limits on the total number and type of slot machines should be set. This would include both casino-based and non casino-based slot machines.

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