Queensland has approved two bids to build multi million dollar casinos within its borders. A Hong King billionaire will take charge of one of the projects, with a Chinese-Australian consortium responsible for the second casino. The bids were given the necessary seals of approval from the Queensland government, with rival bids being turned down for various reasons. The Hong Kong billionaire, Tony Fung, will begin work on a $8.15 billion project, with ASF consortium’s project valued at $7.5 billion. When environmental and gambling approvals are procured from Australia’s central government, construction work can begin.
Queensland’s deputy premier, Jeff Seeney, was very happy with the winning bids and said they will bring a lot of income to the state. “Queensland government has identified these projects as having the capacity to deliver what we are looking for, in terms of the potential to attract inter-state and international tourists. Both sites are close to international airports, which makes them very attractive to visitors from all over the world.”
Countries throughout Australasia have been looking to get a foothold in the tourist gambling business, especially in terms of attracting visitors from China. There are four other proposals of similar stature that were not approved, with the government believing they needed significant work before they could go forward.
The Aquis project will bee stationed 13 kilometers away from the Great Barrier Reef in Cairns. There are plans to have a huge casino, nine five star hotels, and the largest aquarium in the world. The site will hold more than 3,500 rooms.
ASF Group’s project, currently untitled, is said to include a waterfront park and a terminal for cruise ships to dock and station themselves. This casino is being built along the Gold Coast.
Many locals are worried about the impact of the casinos on their community, saying that it will hurt local businesses and the environment. It is unclear whether the casinos will gain the environmental approvals they need to start construction, but with so much money on the line it seems inevitable. For more information on the story, click here.