In his budget speech on the eve of completing 2 years in governance, Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar today proposed certain changes with respect to casino fees and license transfers. The CM has proposed to enhance the existing entry fee of 500/- charged under the Goa Entertainment Tax Act, 1964 to 700/- per person per day. He has also proposed to levy a fee of Rs. 5 crores for transfer of casino license. This casino transfer license fee it is speculated would benefit the Sahara Group casino vessel which is seeking the transfer of Casino Maharaja to itself.
The deatiled text of the budget speech, a copy of which is with OPN states in a section clearly marked for ‘Casino Fees’ about the proposal to hike entry fees. While Pt. 28 asks for the fee levied to be increased from Rs.500 to Rs.700; Pt 29 proposes to levy a casino license transfer fees of Rs. 5 crores. This point also states that a revision of annual recurring fee based on the area for land based casino and the capacity of passenger alongwith crew members of offshore casino.
After the budget speech, during question hour, it is also learnt that the CM assured the Goa assembly that the offshore casinos in River Mandavi, Goa will be out before December 3, 2015 since the licenses were expiring in that year and no renewal would be done. He was futher asked where the offshore casinos would go to which the CM replied that that was a concern of the Casino Managements and if they were concerned they should approach the government rather than the other way around.
“There are total five valid licences. All the licences expire by December 2015, after that there will be no casino vessel in the river,” the CM said, adding that the casino operators have given undertakings during their renewal of licences that they are ready to shift out.
The Casino Annual recurring Fees proposed structure:
- Land Based Casino:
|Upto 100 sq m||Rs. 2 Crores|
|Above 100 sq. m. upto 300 sq. m.||Rs. 2.5 Crores|
|Above 300 sq. m. upto 500 sq. m.||Rs. 3.0 Crores|
|Above 500 sq. m.||Rs. 4.0 Crores|
2. OffShore Casinos:
|Capacity of Passengers alongwith Casino Crew||Fees|
|Upto 100||Rs. 6.0 Crores|
|Above 100 upto 200||Rs. 6.5 Crores|
|Above 200 upto 400||Rs. 7 Crores|
|Above 400||Rs. 8 Crores|