Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung last week gave the thumbs down to a proposed $4.5 billion casino resort project in Ninh Thuan province.
In an announcement last week, the Government Office stated the prime minister had agreed to “stop considering approval of the Mui Dinh high-grade tourism complex” in accordance with a proposal from the Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI).
Nguyen Xuan Tu, director of MPI’s Department of Investment Supervision and Appraisal, declined to tell VIR whether this project had been cancelled because it included a casino, adding the MPI proposal “confidential”.
Late last year Polo Beach International Limited put forward its proposal for a $4.5 billion Mui Dinh tourism complex in Thuan Nam district. The developer has earlier suggested neighbouring Binh Thuan province but was forced to look elsewhere after that province decided to stop licensing new tourism projects in favour of exploiting titanium.
The Hong Kong developer then went to Ninh Thuan saying it wanted to develop a 1,500 hectare mega project comprising resorts, casino facilities, high-rise villas, and a golf course.
The investment was to be implemented through a subsidiary with $900 million of charter capital equal to the 20 per cent of total investment capital requested by legal regulations.
Polo Beach International Limited also submitted an agreement with Johnson Capital, an American real estate capital advisory firm, on developing this project. But none of that was enough to persuade the government to green-light the project. The Vietnamese government has approved several tourism projects containing gambling facilities in recent years.
Canada’s Asian Development Coast Limited won an investment certificate to build a $4.1 billion resort with casino in Ba Ria-Vung Tau province. Nearby, US’s Winvest Investment LLC also was awarded an investment certificates for developing a $4 billion resort and casino.