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Nepal casinos ordered to pay up or close down

The Nepal government has issued a three day ultimatum to casinos that have failed to pay required taxes and royalties, local media reports.

“We have served a three-day ultimatum on tax defaulting casinos and mini-casinos, and if they do not pay heed to the department’s orders, they will be punished as per the law.”

Under Casino Regulation 2013, the Nepalese government pushed new rules which required operators to pay a Rs20 million (US$307,800) fee to obtain a casino operating licence, as well as an annual payment equal to 50 percent of the operating license fee per year. As well as this, operators were also required to pay an annual royalty of Rs30 million.

In 2014, the Nepal government made the decision to shut down all casinos defaulting on the royalty and tax payments.

However, the three casinos in Nepal, including Casino Royale, Casino Rad and Casino Venus have been allowed to continue to operate since, taking advantage of an interim order from the Supreme Court allowing them to remain open.

The defaulting casinos have now been given three days to pay the amounts due.

A committee has also been formed to ascertain the actual amount of fees and taxes owed by the casinos to the government.

The committee includes representatives from the Department of Inland Revenue, Office of the Auditor General, Tourism Ministry and the Tourism Department.

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