Business News

Hit to Help Set Up One of Four Russia's Gambling Zones

Nova Gorica, 13 August (STA) - Slovenian gaming company Hit will help set up a gambling zone in Russia's Altai Krai in the Siberian Federal District. Russia restricted gambling activities to only four government-appointed zones across the country as of July 2009. What is more, the gambling industry may only be located in unpopulated areas.

A letter of intent to help set up the Siberian Coin gambling zone was signed on Friday by Hit CEO Drago Podobnik and Altai Deputy Governor Mikhail Shchetinin in Nova Gorica, Hit said in a press release.

According to the company, the talks took months to complete. Hit will be advising Altai Krai on matters related to the creation of the gambling zone, but does not intend to invest in the project.

The Siberian Coin will be set up similarly to the US gambling and entertainment centres which often take an experienced partner for advice.

Hit noted in the press release that the today's signing was one of the efforts to help the company cope with the economic crisis. The management believes that this letter could be an opportunity for additional income by sharing its know-how.

"We expect a lot from this cooperation - the opportunity is really unique," said Podobnik. "This region has a population of about six million, it's relatively rich, but has no experience in the field of gambling tourism."

The gambling area will be very remote, located some 110 kilometres away from the nearest train station, the Russian business daily Kommersant reported on 15 February 2008, when the area was designated one of the gambling zones.

The gambling zone will stretch out on 23 square kilometres, according to Kommersant. The location is some 250 kilometres from Altai's administrative centre Barnaul.

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