f the 1,4 billion in bets until the tenth month of 2011, the 75.4% (around 1,05 billion) belong to Type-A slots; 19% or us$ 266.2 million to table games and 3% or us$ 41.2 million to horse racetracks. Compared to 2010, the increment in money for these businesses in general was 17.5%.
Considering the current situation, Yakarta Ríos, president of the Foundation for Ethical Consumption, she pointed that the games of chance activity is well considered, if they achieved to limit it just to tourists, and not for local residents. With regards to compulsive gambling, Alfaro indicated that ASAJA, comprised by 14 casinos that operate in Panama, have corporate social responsibility programs in order to deal with it.
“We have the oup-out program, agreements with the Ministry of Health and with the Center of Studies for Addiction Treatment, but, as they are voluntary actions, the companies that are not included in ASAJA are excluded from those initiatives”, he said.
In Panama, there are 26 slot halls, 16 casinos, 13 betting agencies and a bingo hall. They have presence in all the provinces of the country, except in Darién and in the native communities. With regards to the economic impact of the games of chance activities, economist Víctor Cruz commented that they are proportional to the growth of the population.
Another face of those businesses are the taxes paid to the state in 2011, where the Ministry of Economy and Finances reported that slots generated the 48.4% (us$ 30.6 million), followed by casinos with 30% (18.7 million). In the Panama lottery, bets generated 492.8 million up to November 2011, which represents an increment of 4,5%.