Mae Sot district proposed as site of Thailand’s 1st official casino

Photo by Kvnga via Unsplash

An Entertainment Complex Committee, set up by the government, has proposed Mae Sot district in the northern province of Tak as an ideal location for Thailand’s first legal entertainment complex, with a casino.

The committee has announced that they’ve gathered all information from their survey, both negative and positive, and is ready to submit the findings to the Thai cabinet.

The Entertainment Complex Committee last weekend met with local officials at Mae Sot district, located at the border between Thailand and Myanmar, to investigate any economic development possibilities. The committee also discussed the complications of investing in a legal entertainment complex, illegal gambling prevention, and tax collection from casino businesses.

Thepthai Saenpong, one of the committee members, made it known he received reports from Chiang Rai officials, business associations, and the Thai Chamber of Commerce, and found that Mae Sot was more prepared than other provinces.

The former Democrat MP for Nakhon Si Thammarat says the Mae Sot venue has major facilities to support visitors, including a cross-border logistic checkpoint, immigration checkpoint, airport, transportation infrastructure, and the upcoming double-track railway linking Tak in the north to Nakhon Pathom province in central Thailand.

Infrastructure aside, Thepthai revealed that the residents in the area would welcome legal entertainment complexes. He says residents want the area to grow as fast as Myawaddy city in Myanmar, where various Chinese investors operate casinos.

Not all of the report findings were positive, however. Thepthai says Mae Sot had 3 main drawbacks.

Firstly, the area doesn’t have enough land for the investors, and the land is expensive. Thepthai says the entertainment complex would need about 1,000 to 2,000 acres and, as most of the land belongs to the Treasury Department, it is unlikely they will sell it to a private enterprise.

Secondly, many workers in the Mae Sot district come from neighbouring countries, so the area would need skill development centres to train Thai workers in the casino service for the business to run effectively.

The final problem is the government’s tax collection system. Thepthai says for the entertainment complex and casino to work, the government would have to allow tax privileges for local companies situated there.

SOURCE: Naewna | Siamrath

Northern Thailand News

Petch Petpailin

Petpailin, or Petch, is a Thai translator and writer for The Thaiger who focuses on translating breakingThai news stories into English. With a background in field journalism, Petch brings several years of experience to the English News desk at The Thaiger. Before joining The Thaiger, Petch worked as a content writer for several known blogging sites in Bangkok, including Happio and The Smart Local. Her articles have been syndicated by many big publishers in Thailand and internationally, including the Daily Mail, The Sun and the Bangkok Post. She is a news writer who stops reading news on the weekends to spend more time cafe hopping and petting dwarf shrimp! But during office hours, you can find Petch on LinkedIn and you can reach her by email at

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