Holland Casino meets with Dutch government over casino closures

15 May 2020

Dutch state-owned land-based operator Holland Casino and national gambling industry trade association VAN Kansspelen have met with representatives from the country’s government to outline their concerns over its decision to extend the closure of casinos until September.

Updated measures from the Dutch government mean gambling facilities such as casinos and gaming arcades will not be able to open until 1 September at the earliest, having been temporarily closed since the middle of March due to the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.

However, Holland Casino and VAN Kansspelen criticised the decision, arguing that it would negatively impact business and more than 8,000 people employed by the sector.

Holland Casino and VAN Kansspelen outlined their concerns to Minister for Legal Protection Sander Dekker at the meeting, discussing alternative options that the government will now consider.

According to Holland Casino, follow-up disussions on the matter will be held in the near future.

“Holland Casino and VAN Kansspelen took note with deep disappointment of the measures taken by the government to allow a reopening of casinos and slot machine arcades from 1 September,” Holland Casino said.

“The announced reopening date is too late. It creates irresponsibly high risks for players because Holland Casino and Van Kansspelen cannot fulfill their social mission of offering safe and responsible gaming with a focus on preventing and combating crime.”

Last month, Holland Casino reported year-on-year revenue and profit growth for 2019.

Revenue amounted to €728.9m (£647.6m/$787.5m), up by 11.0% year-on-year, with a total of 6.2 million visitors coming to its venues over the year. Net profit for the year was also up 13.6% to €67.6m.