France aims to reopen casinos the 15th December in bid to save the economy following its second lockdown since 30th October, Trade union Casinos de France announced.
While essential stores have remained opened during France’s second lockdown, casinos, bingo halls and betting shops have been forced shut.
After receiving recommendations from French Prime Minister Jean Castex and President Emmanuel Macron, Casinos de France confidently announced that casinos will reopen the 15th December and will run through Christmas and New Year's.
Following the news that French casinos will open their doors to customers the 15th December, it was highlighted that this will be in agreement with strict health and safety protocols. This includes but is not limited to capacity limits, temperature checks, and mandatory registration for traceability purposes. Additionally, casinos will continue to promote awareness campaigns, such as ‘TousAntiCovid’ meaning ‘All Against Covid’.
As Casinos de France noted, casinos are ready to go "even further in protecting customers and collaborators” compared to the first lockdown.
Undoubtedly, COVID-19 has greatly impacted the gaming industry, in particular the sports betting and land-based casino industries. Like many other European countries currently enduring restrictions or national lockdowns, France is no different and this has ultimately harmed the gaming industry.
The industry in France employs 45,000 people indirectly, 15,000 directly and contributed to €1.4 billion in the tax budget annually.
France Galop, the governing body for the countries flat and steeplechase racing in France, have expressed concern stating that a continued lockdown would result in a €30m ($35.6m) industry loss.
Casinos de France have also observed an increase in illegal unlicensed online operators, causing concern in regard to vulnerable players. Moreover, such websites don’t conduct anti money laundering practices.
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