Aquis Entertainment chairman Tony Fung has announced plans to resume talks with the Australian Capital Territory government about the proposed AUD330m ($255.1m) redevelopment of Casino Canberra.
Speaking during the company’s AGM, Fung said redeveloping the casino “still forms part of our longer-term strategy for growth in Canberra”, despite talks having stalled due to disagreements over slot machine numbers.
“We do remain committed to the redevelopment of the property and we believe that the post COVID- 19 recovery in Canberra is the greatest opportunity to do so,” he said. “We will be holding discussions with the government this year to discuss the conditions in place in relation to the redevelopment and EGM’s and we look forward to the opportunity to deliver to Canberra the kind of world class entertainment precinct that our Capital city deserves and to creating many new employment opportunities and further securing all existing roles within our business.”
Aquis, which purchased Casino Canberra in 2014, submitted a redevelopment plan the following year, seeking to install up to 500 slot machines. The property is not permitted to operate slot machines under the current legislation.
The company’s initial bid was rejected in December 2018, with the ACT government instead making a counter offer which would have allowed Aquis up to 200 slot machines and 60 EGMs. However, ultimately the negotiations were inconclusive.