China cracks down on efforts to lure citizens to gamble overseas, online gambling

Mar 30, 2017 9:08 AM

State media in China report the crackdown on efforts to lure its citizens to gamble in overseas casinos will be ongoing. The campaign will now also target online gambling available on the mainland, the state-run Xinhua news agency reported, quoting Public Security Minister Guo Shengkun.

Gambling is illegal on Mainland China except for government-run lotteries. However, worldwide, Chinese citizens are a vital source of clients in all major casinos centers including Macau, Singapore and Las Vegas.

Over many years, a number of casinos have sent marketing and sales staff into China to attract customers. However, those marketing efforts have been derailed since late last year because of the detention of at least 18 staff members of Crown Resorts working on the mainland.

“We must seriously investigate and severely punish those companies and individuals involved in enticing and organizing Chinese tourists to gamble in overseas casinos,” Guo was quoted as saying. “We must severely punish those casino-related illegal labor agents and crack down on activities for investing in overseas casinos,” he added.

Reports also indicated that the minister is organizing a special meeting of the country’s top police officers to draw up plans to tackle cross-border online gambling and stop betting before a Communist Party Congress takes place in Beijing later this year. Held every five years, the event oversees changes in the country’s leadership.