International edition
September 19, 2020

Said Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Alsart Group, Lyubov Loginova

“Azov City is the most promising of the four gambling zones in Russia”

(Russia).- From July 1, 2009 operating of casinos was prohibited throughout Russia, except for four designated gambling zones. But, even today, three of the four ones exist only on paper. The current situation and perspectives of gambling zones in Russia has been commented by Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Alsart Group, Lyubov Loginova.

T

he Russian government adopted the gambling law in December 2006. But by July 1, 2009, none of the four designated gambling zones (in Primorye, Altai and Kaliningrad regions and in the border of the Krasnodar territory and Rostov region) was ready to receive the players. Even today, three of the four ones exist only on paper.

Loginova says that today in the gambling zone "Azov-City", which is located on the border of the Krasnodar territory and Rostov region, has already worked the first legal casino “Oracle”. It was built by the company "Royal Time" (Kazan city, Russia). The firm spent us$ 10 million for that project, and almost us$ 84.7 million spent on the acquisition of slot machines and other equipment.

Administration of Krasnodar territory has laid the electricity, gas and water lines, sewerage to the gambling zone and brought to order roads leading to "Azov-City" at the expense of the budget. us$ 16.2 million were spent for this purpose. Government does not plan to fund "Azov-City" anymore, relying on off-budget investment.

Krasnodar developer “Park City” has started construction of the second casino in the “Azov-City”. The opening of this gambling establishment is scheduled for next August 1. It was recently announced about intends of the "Olympus" company to build its casino in "Azov-City". The area of fourth gambling establishment is 150,000 sqm. Casino will be built by American technology "Sprung".

Two other companies - "Business Consult" and "Northern Caucasus Region" are going to build their casinos in the gambling zone. "Business Consult" plans to begin construction in summer 2010. The terms of the construction of the casino by “Northern Caucasus Region” company is still unknown. Both companies will build capital building in the “Azov-City”.

“From the viewpoint of equipment’s supply for today, “Azov City”- the most promising of four gambling zones in Russia, - said Lyubov Loginova - “There are already tangible results. Today we participate in this project as a supplier of imported gambling equipment. But, in time, it may be that we will come into position of the operating company”.

This gambling zone is in Altai region. Kemerovo company “Alti” which became the winner of the contest in December 2009 was given a lease on two lots in gambling zone “Siberian coin”. The company plans to build there a hotel complex with capacity 50-100 persons with a casino as well as two business class hotels. Today, the “Alti” company projects the complexes, building of which will begin this year. The organizers expect that one of these gambling complexes will open its doors to visitors at the end of 2010.

Interest to this gambling zones is shown by Russian and foreign companies. Another open tender for leasing of land for building of tourist and entertainment complexes in the “Siberian Coin” planned to be hold soon. Noteworthy that this gambling zone locates near to the tourist zone "Beryuzovaya Katun". The Administration of Altai region is actively working to attract investments to the development of inbound tourism in the region, growth of infrastructure, organization of tourist charter flights from European countries.

The perspectives of participation in the projects in the “Siberian coin” and “Beryuzovaya Katun” repeatedly discussed between Administration and the Italian, Austrian, Slovenian and Swiss leaders of gambling establishments. Cooperation with Italian tour operators has already established.

"I do not entertain optimism about the “Siberian Coin”, as the gambling center ", -notes Lyubov Loginova - "Perspectives of Altai gambling zone are not clear and now they are pretty grim. Altai region is situated in Siberia in 3400 km from Moscow, and the average minimum temperature in January is minus 20 -24 C degrees. This project particularly needs of investments. But who will give it? There are not many major investors in Russia, who can invest in the gambling areas.”

“As far as I know, the administration of the Altai region is ready for such scenario and prepared for that case in the business model of the project. Nonrandom that the focus in development of “Siberian Coin” is made on the construction of tourist and entertainment facilities. And also this gambling zone locates near to the tourist zone “Beryuzovaya Katun” not by chance. Properly organized combination of exotic nature of Siberia and developed tourism and entertainment infrastructure could make “Siberian Coin” (together with " Beryuzovaya Katun") a popular destination for tourists from all over the world. Just like any other modern tourist complex in Russia", she pointed.

12 attempts to organize the auction of the first lots of land for future gambling zone “Yantarnaya” failed due to lack of applicants. Now the government of the Kaliningrad region is staking on a single conceptual project of a gambling zone, abandoning the retail sale of lots for building. An open competition to develop a unified and integrated concept of gaming zone " Yantarnaya " will be declared after some time. Meanwhile, lots are offered for rent.

"In my opinion - this is losing project” – says Lyubov Loginova, -" Russian players have much more attractive places in Europe than in Kaliningrad. And with the opening of the gambling business in Ukraine, the chance that the “Yantarnaya” will attract gamblers goes to zero. And unlikely it comes to building a casinos – there are no investors and the local population acts against the neighborhood with the casinos”.

The opening of the Far-Eastern gambling zone "Primorye" is still very far away, but work on its creation goes. In the budget of the Primorsky region for 2010 us$ 390,194 are for the development of documentation for the planning of the territory under this zone.
"We are not going to invest the local or federal money in the gambling zone –the project will be implemented at the expense of investors. Gambling operators from Primorye will also take part in its construction ", - said Governor of the region Sergey Darkin.

Earlier, the governor noted that the experience of such projects in Primorye, as well as favorable climatic conditions, rather developed infrastructure and neighborhood to countries in the Asia-Pacific region will contribute to the success of the project. The gambling zone in Primorye will affect a huge area - China, Japan, South and North Korea. "In all these countries gambling is prohibited, and Primorye is the nearest point where casinos are allowed and it is an average of 1.5 hours of flight. In this regard, Primorskaya zone has a high potential for the investors. "

But the situation is complicated by several problems. In particular, by absence of developed transport communications and low tourist attraction. However, according to the Governor of Primorye opinion, gambling zone will be built in the next two years. "We already have enough detailed business plan, which we have created two years ago", - assured Sergei Darkin. Also, according to his words, master plan for the development of the gambling zone will be prepared until the end of the year.

“Primorye is the second gambling zone important for us, "- said Lyubov Loginova -" This region is actively developing. With the support of the Government of Russian Federation here has run the project of construction of the Far Eastern Federal University, where the 2012 APEC summit will be held. Also, large air transit hub will be created in Vladivostok for the APEC summit. The residence of the first persons of the country - Medvedev and Putin is planned to be build in the Primorsky region in 2011. In addition, Primorye is visa-free territory for citizens of China, where gambling is prohibited, but where are lots of zealous fans of gambling. Lots of players are in Japan, Korea and other Southeast Asian countries. All this makes the perspectives of a gambling zone in the Primorye very promising,” she concluded.

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