Kangwon Land casino closure extends to two weeks as virus epidemic sweeps South Korea - IAG

Sunday 1st March 2020

The operators of South Korean casino Kangwon Land has announced a week-long extension to the temporary closure of its gaming operations and other facilities until next Sunday 8 March amid the coronavirus epidemic continues to spread throughout the country.

Kangwon Land, the only Korean casino in which locals are allowed to gamble, had originally shut down gaming operations for three days from Sunday 23 February to Wednesday 26 February before later extending the closure for another three days until 29 February.

On Friday, the company announced that the casino would now remain closed for at least another eight days, until 6am on 8 March - a full two weeks since it first shuttered its doors.

Kangwon Land also announced the closure of its hotel, condominiums and ski resort for the same eight-day period, while the property's family theme park, Water World, will remain closed for an extra 12 days until 20 February.

In a notice published on the company's website and filed with the Korea Exchange, Kangwon Land said the closures were designed to "put customer safety first, although there had been no confirmed cases of Coronavirus among any of the company's staff or guests.

Nevertheless, it seems highly unlikely that casino operations will resume by next week given the number of confirmed cases in South Korea continues to skyrocket, with more than 1,000 new cases identified over the past two days alone to push the national total over 3,500.

Kangwon Land had previously estimated that closing the casino for six days would cost the company around KRW 22 billion (US$18.1 million), however that figure now continues to climb.

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