Development of the Gambling Industry and the Future of Casinos in Crete

REDS SA has acquired a building at the former US military base at Gournes on the island of Crete in Greece through its subsidiary Ellaktor Group for €42.2 million with the aim of opening a casino.

The developer is preparing to present its casino concept to the Hellenic Gaming Commission. Once the proposal is submitted, the tender process is expected to take approximately six months. In addition, REDS plans to develop a hotel, conference facilities, residential complexes and a shopping mall over the next five years in collaboration with local and foreign investors.

The property in Gournes has an area of ​​345,567 square meters and is located 13 km from Nikos Kazantzakis Airport and 20 km from the new airport under construction at Kastelli. Currently, this territory houses the Hellenic Center for Marine Research, the Cretan Aquarium and the International Exhibition Center of Crete.

In October, the President of the Hellenic Gaming Commission, Dimitris Zanatos, expressed concerns about the impact of unlicensed gambling operations on the Greek gambling market. At the 27th Conference of Economists on Online Games, he emphasized that such actions entail “large financial losses and unfair competition”.

He declared that players were placing “very large sums” with illegal operators and called on the government and others to take “more organized” concerted action.  “Government, independent authorities and providers must support collaborative actions for safe play and to deal with problems and social impacts”, Zanatos said.

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