Nepal does not have a thriving gambling community. Back in 2014, the government ordered all land-based and online casinos to shut down and they haven’t really bounced back ever since. The major crackdown on casinos happened because of large sums of unpaid taxes. Ever since then 7 casinos have opened but they remain inaccessible for local residents and are meant only for tourists. Nepal citizens are combined to participate in any online gambling in Nepal, including online casinos as well, but unlike the real-life casino cases, the government won’t prosecute those who bet online.
But this gloomy gambling scene might be on its way to improvement since India’s largest casino operator Delta Corp is entering Nepal’s market.
What is Delta Corp?
Delta Corp has been granted a gaming license in Nepal, after two years from the initial negotiations between these two. Delta is the only publicly traded casino operator in India, with three floating casinos and three land-based casinos. Delta is also involved in online poker and rummy business so it’s evident that over the last few years they have done pretty well for themselves. Allowing India to revive Nepal’s gambling scene could be an extremely beneficial endeavor for both of them and while we don’t know when exactly this casino will open but considering the professionalism and the success of Delta Corp it will probably be a beneficial deal.
Casino culture is not very popular in Nepal for the lack of variety and because it is prohibited for the locals. Even though there are places where you can gamble, play blackjack for real money and enjoy other popular casino games both online and offline, if you’re a tourist there is still a very evident lack of variety in Nepal and the overall gambling scene is not exciting enough for avid gamblers. Since Nepal has been on a journey to develop its tourism industry more, the recent deal with India makes perfect sense.
Delta Corp issued a statement announcing the partnership and said that it has issued a license for its Deltin Group subsidiary to operate in Nepal. Preceding` this announcement, back in 2017, Delta Corp signed a memorandum of understanding with Everest Hospitality and Hotel Pvt Ltd, according to which the company was granted space to build a Marriott Hotel in Kathmandu.
Delta Corp was supposed to open a hotel and a casino in it almost two years ago but due to undisclosed circumstances the plans changed and the opening had to be postponed. The original plan was to open the 5-star, 235-room Marriott Kathmandu by June 2018, but the property started accepting guests only in July 2019. No specific date for the casino opening has been announced but Delta has assured the public that the casino will start operating soon enough.
How Delta can help Nepal’s tourism
Nepal’s government is determined to boost tourism in the following years and improving the country’s gambling scene is definitely one of the top priorities to look into in order to see the results quickly. The Visit Nepal 2020 Initiative is meant to help out the country in the tourism department and it looks like the country is already taking proactive steps and embracing the country’s touristic potential. The opening of the Delta Casino will also shake things up for its competitors and we will probably see many improvements happen in the industry overall since the newest addition to Nepal’s gambling scene will set a new standard in the country.
The gambling industry can do a lot to improve the tourism scene and can actually promote the country as a desirable entertainment destination. Nepal could really use this boost to strengthen its economy and even though it seems like the deal was not without its challenges since the hotel opening date experienced some delays the overall outcome of this partnership probably won’t be affected by the postponed opening date. This mutually beneficial partnership can become a first step for Nepal towards embracing the gambling culture yet again but keeping it exclusive for the tourists while offering them more than 5-6 casinos.