Cambodia is now the latest region in the world to shut down casinos due to the spread of the coronavirus. In the Southeast Asian country, the virus is spreading rapidly and casinos are of course a hot spot for potentially more cases. The total number of people infected in the region is now over 100. One case in particular includes a man who worked at a casino near the border with Thailand.
Prime Minister Hun Sen announced the closure in a press conference, stating that the casinos will shut down April 1st at 23:59pm and will not reopen until the virus is under control. The Finance Ministry of the country is working to provide tax exemptions while the casinos remain closed.
With the land-based casinos now closed, the region is pretty much without an option for gambling. The Prime Minister banned a provision of online gambling services late last year, so there is no iGaming option in the country currently.
The move to close the casinos comes at a time when most every gaming venue across the globe has shut their doors. The coronavirus is highly contagious and casinos are facilities with high touch points such as ATMs, slot machines, poker chips, cards, etc.
These items and machines can of course be cleaned but there is no amount of cleaning that could contain the virus if hundreds of people are gathered in one spot. In the beginning of the outbreak, casinos were offering hand sanitizer stations, particularly in the US, and cleaning at a more frequent rate.
However, the virus continued to spread rapidly and now it is recommended that everyone stay home and keep to themselves in the hopes that the spread will slow down and hospitals will be better suited to handle the influx of patients as more people are diagnosed with the virus.