"It’s important to tell the public that we must continue to have our guard up," said Claudia Sheinbaum, Head of the Government of Mexico City, when announcing the decision to allow the reactivation of a number of entertainment venues including betting shops, casinos and bowling alleys.
"We’ve been experiencing the pandemic for seven months now, and in this city in particular there’s a desire to return to normality, but it’s important that we continue to implement preventive measures," Sheinbaum added.
A drop in hospitalizations has prompted the Government to decide to reopen casinos and shops in order to respond to economic demands, although the number of infected people continues to rise,
The reopening will happen even in the event that a lockdown system remains in place, government officials explained, Prensa Fifí reports.
Casinos and betting shops will be able to operate from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. every day. However, they will need to ensure that they operate at 30% of their total capacity. Players will only be able to stay for an hour.
Additionally, there will be constant disinfection and the public and employees will be required to wear masks at all times. The restaurant areas will be closed, and there is no return date in the near future.
Recently, the Government of Mexico City announced a new measure to benefit legal gambling operators with the cancellation of the 6% tax on lottery prizes, until December 31, 2020. In August, the lottery requested authorization from the Ministry of finance to invest $1.5m to update the machines it uses to carry out the draws.
According to the organization, 24.13% of the machines “are useless”, as they have broken glass, are scratched and some parts are worn with cables in poor condition.