The final draft of the casino decree (‘Casino Decree’) has been passed by the Ministry of Justice and Government’s Office. It is now on the table of the Politburo for their comments, which are as always, the most important. It is expected that the Casino Decree would be issued on 1 July 2016. Nevertheless, there is no absolute guarantee on this prospect. This is because in order for a decree to become effective, it must be publicized on Official Gazette first and waits for a 15-day period from the first publication on the Official Gazette.

For many reasons, the text of the Casino Decree has not been made public. The Ministry of Finance has been successful in keeping the draft Casino Decree under secrecy. Again, whether Vietnamese residents are permitted to enter casinos in Vietnam is a big question that may wait for decision of the highest level of Vietnam’s political system.

Recently, the Ministry of Public Security (MPS) has proposed a draft decree that lists casino as a conditional business which is subject to license of the MPS with respect to social orders. A very interesting point is that the draft decree only prohibits Vietnamese from playing on gaming machines. It is important to note that no such prohibition is mentioned with respect to Vietnamese’s playing in casinos. This may give a hint that Vietnamese may enter casinos if they are ‘permitted’. This fact corresponds to provisions of the new Penal Code that makes it very clear that only ‘illegal’ gambling is punished.

So, though not 100% sure, more likely that Vietnamese may enter casinos and gamble but with specific conditions.

At present, pending the issuance of the Casino Decree, all projects on casino are put on hold.