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1.

Introduction
Recently, there has been a heated debate about having a casino in Singapore. After many
arguments, the Singapore's government has decided that 2 casinos will be built at Marina Bay
and Sentosa respectively.

1.1 Purpose
The objectives of this report are to:

1. Find out the advantages and disadvantages of constructing the casinos; and

2. Analyze the different opinions of Singaporeans regarding the casinos in Singapore.

1.2 Scope
3 main issues were brought up from the surveys and interviews that we have conducted.

1. Singaporeans would achieve more job opportunities.

• The government has to employ workers to run the casino.

• Considering the man-power required, Singapore will have lesser people who are jobless.

2. Boosting the economy in Singapore.

• The casinos could be considered as an attraction in Singapore.

• Tourists from various countries will then visit Singapore to gamble.

• In this case, economy in Singapore would change for the better.

3. Social life of Singaporeans

• Gambling is usually a major vice in lifestyles.

• Teenagers may be badly-influenced by parents who consistently gamble.

• Family ties would then be fragile.

• Increase of crime rates

1.3 Research Methodology


We decided to use the secondary research, mainly the internet to source for more information and
at the same time, keep ourselves updated with the latest news about the casinos. The websites we
researched on consists of:
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1. Reason why the government consider constructing casinos. It is said that Singapore has to
adapt to the fast-moving society according to the countries that are developing major
tourist attractions.

2. What is self-exclusion? Is it effective in reducing gambling problem? Self-exclusion


enables a person who is at risk of developing bad gambling habits. They can then refrain
from gambling and seek help to control his/her problem.

3. Recruitments for job positions within the casinos have begun in April 2009. Foreigners
are also hoping to be employed in the casino in Singapore. It is assumed that the number
of employees would peak in June/July 2009.

4. Prostitution and illegal money lending are often associated with casinos. The casino
operator will be responsible to ensure that such activities do not take place within its
premises. Strict internal controls and procedures are also needed to protect the integrity of
games and financial transactions against cheats and other criminals.

In order to get accurate results, we decided to use the primary research. According to the list of
our opinions and concerns, we created a survey and interview questions. A total of 20 persons
were surveyed, and 10 persons were interviewed. In addition, a video clip of 2 interviewees are
attached in the report as well.

We have gathered the opinions of various groups of people, ranging from young adults to
working adults. A total of 20 persons were surveyed, and 10 persons were interviewed
accordingly.

1.3 Limitations of Research


We discovered 2 main limitations when conducting research.

1. Several people whom we interviewed are mostly of our age.

• They are either unaware of the happenings about the casinos, or;

• They care less about them.

2. The lack of support from organizations.

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• We managed to email an organization for enquires. However, the person-in-charge did


not give us a reply.

2. Executive Summary
An online survey and a series of face-to-face interviews were done to determine the views of
Singaporeans on the upcoming establishment of a casino in Singapore. A total of 30 young adults
were surveyed and interviewed. They generally felt positive about the casino; albeit some
mentioning that they had worries regarding the negative secondary effects that might arise due to
the existence of a casino.

From the survey, 65% of the respondents agreed that having a casino in Singapore is advisable,
while a minority either answered ‘Strongly agree’, ‘Disagree’ or ‘Strongly disagree’. Next, we
asked if the reputation of Singapore being an ‘education hub’ would be tarnished following the
advent of the casino, and the majority disagreed.

Another study was conducted to see if Singaporeans think that having a casino would result in an
increase in job opportunities. 70% of them answered ‘Yes’, while 5% and 25% of respondents
answered ‘No’ and ‘Maybe’ respectively. Some of them even pointed out that ‘Casinos will
require a lot of manpower to run the place and for all operations to go smoothly. It will definitely
boost employment.’ Apart from the study, there were newspaper articles which proved our point
– An increase in job opportunities for Singaporeans.

The purpose of the next study is to find out how the casino will help Singapore in boosting its
economy. The majority of the respondents believed that the main boost will come from the
potential influx of tourists while the rest tended to believe that it will be the increased inflow of
foreign investors that will serve as the main boost.

Next, we looked into the social repercussions of the existence of a casino in Singapore. We
questioned which of the listed factors will impact the family members in the event that one of
them was to indulge in problem gambling. A significant portion of responses indicated
‘Financially’, while most others indicated ‘Social life.’

The following study conducted was to see how casino will affect teenagers the most, and results
clearly showed that most agreed with it influencing and encouraging them to gamble, while
equal number of respondents believe that family issues will arise due to negative family
environment, causing bad attitude, or that teenagers might adopt the thinking that gambling will
earn them a bright future.

Then, we went on to discover Singaporean views on the government regulations to prevent


negative issues from compulsive gambling. The majority feel that our Singapore government had
not done enough, and the remaining 45% felt otherwise.

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3. Findings
According to all the surveys and interviews we have in hand, we discovered that our respondents
carry different opinions, regarding how the 2 casinos will affect the daily lives of Singaporeans
and Singapore herself.

3.1 Advantage or Disadvantage?


Within our knowledge, the moment the idea of building the IR (integrated resort) was set, as
mass amount of our residents voiced out their opinions, which consists of both positive and
negative feedbacks.

According to our research, there is still an abounding group of people who believes that having 2
casinos in Singapore is not a bad idea as it will ultimately help to boost our economy. On the
other hand, the minority are concerned with the negative points of having 2 casinos in Singapore,
mainly people being addicted to gambling or breaking the laws.

Therefore, we will look into all the queries with the following findings.

3.2 Acceptance level of casinos


The responses are relatively positive as they showed the following results: 5% of the respondents
strongly agreed and 65% of them agreed that having 2 casinos in Singapore are advisable. This
proved that majority of the Singaporeans have no objections against the idea of building the
casinos in Singapore despite the fact that several debates were held in Parliament in the early
stages of year 2006. (Refer to Appendix A)

3.3 Concerns over reputation of Singapore


This operation concerns the reputation of Singapore. She is a well-known as an “Education
Hub”. However to our relief, 75% of our respondents believe that it will hardly affect the
country’s reputation. (Refer to Appendix B)

This shows that people’s mindsets are not leaning towards ‘building the casinos will affect the
nation in a whole and not just education.’

3.4 Job opportunities, Economy boost


The initial idea of the approval regarding the construction of the 2 integrated casinos by Prime
Minister Lee Hsien Loong was to boost the economy and create more job opportunities.

It is estimated that with the investment of US$5billions, 35 000 jobs will be created and in
addition, a boost of US$1.5billion will be provided to the economy annually. As we have
expected, majority of our respondents (70%) do believe that there will be an increase in job
opportunities once the casinos are ready to function. (Refer to Appendix C)

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However, we discovered that there is a concern from several respondents regarding the number
of vacancies after the opening of the casinos. Some believed that it may increase job
opportunities, but it would ultimately benefit the foreigners instead of the locals.

According to our research on the recent Education and Career Fair held at Suntec on the 5-
8March, IR recruitment drive announced that they will place Singaporeans as their priority. This
proves that Singaporeans still carry the wrong mindset and they need to have more knowledge
regarding how the recruitment system works.

As mentioned by PM Lee, building the 2 casinos is a way to boost the economy. With this
information on hand, we did a research for our respondents to rate the factors, whether the idea
of building the casinos would boost our economy. Ranging from a scale of 1 to 5 (1 being the
least while 5 being the most), 45% of the respondents believed that it will attract more tourists
from various countries and 37% of them believed that it will be able to attract investors with a
high rating of 5. In terms of attracting Singaporeans to gamble and foreign talents, 40% and 25%
of the respondents respectively rated 4 for both. (Refer to Appendix D)

This definitely shows that the respondents understand the interest of constructing the 2 casinos,
therefore proving that they are not exactly clueless about the IR.

Research also showed that Singaporeans are heavy gamblers and they roughly spend around
US$1billion every year in casinos located overseas. Given a situation, say, by building the 2
casinos could bring this large sum of money back to Singapore, isn’t that a good way to boost
economy? It is considered as a win-win solution.

3.5 Effects of Casino Gambling (As a whole)


One other major problem is that people are discussing about the consequences of casino
gambling. Many fear that minority of the people may be too engrossed in gambling, which will
eventually lead to an increase in crime rates. For instances, loan sharking, money laundering or
even prostitution. This will nevertheless tarnish Singapore’s reputation as a clean and safe
country which one can live in.

Most of our interviewees (70%) agree that it is possible to have an increase in crime rates.
Reason being, people may commit crimes due to desperation. This is also a major concern that
aroused a few debates all over Singapore.

However, we are known as a country with tight security and high efficiency when it comes to
resolving crimes. Even if it happens to be true, I believe that it will not affect our lives as much
as it may seem to be. Furthermore, the government conducted studies overseas and it shows that
our law enforcement counterparts in other jurisdictions such as Australia and UK, also, we are
informed that casino-related crime can be kept under control in most cases. In addition, further
findings have proven that there is no relationship between crimes and legalized gaming.

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3.6 Effects of Casino Gambling II (Teenagers)


After researching, it shows that more and more people started gambling at a young age. In a
survey report done by MINISTRY OF COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT, YOUTH AND
SPORTS, it showed that pathological gamblers who started gambling at the age of below 18 had
risen from 7% in 2005 to 18% in 2008.

This leads us to the next problem, regarding on how casinos will affect the teenagers. Our results
show that most of our respondents (80%) think that the casinos will influence and encourage
them to gamble as it is tested and proved as an addiction. (Refer to Appendix F)

Our respondents are also worried that the casinos will cause family problems and youngsters
would adopt the mindset of not having any occupation in future, and that betting and gambling
would be more than enough. Results showed that respondents (65%) think this way. (Refer to
Appendix F)

However, one of our interviewees gave us a different view towards this problem. He quoted that,
“It must be important to note that the existence of a casino does not necessitate the eventual
prevalence of gambling in students.” It means that starting to gamble at whatever age or being a
gambling addict lies on the hands of the teenagers themselves, and not just their surroundings.

3.7 Effects of Casino Gambling III (Family Ties)


Using the same survey report, we also managed to retrieve the marital statuses of the gamblers in
terms of percentage. We found out that in 2008, among the gamblers, 57% are married with kids.

Since more than half of those gamblers are married and have a family of their own, we came up
with several choices for our respondents to voice out their opinions, on whether family-bonds
will be if affected if 1 of the family-members is overly active in gambling, with a scale of 1 to 5
(1 being the least and 5 being the most). Our respondents believe that it will affect the family
financially and socially as they rated 5 for both problems with 79% and 40% respectively,
followed by health concern and education/job performance rated 4 with percentage of 40% for
both. (Refer to Appendix E)

Also, we decided to post a question for our interviewees to find out whether the job or academic
performance of Singaporeans will be affected upon the building of the casinos. Most of the
interviewees (60%) believe that there will be a negative impact on either job or academic
performance but to just a small extent.

As stated by one of our interviewee, “according to the British Gambling Prevalence Survey
2007, it was found that only 0.6% of the adult population had problem gambling issues.” This
clearly showed that minority of the population might be affected when the casinos are ready to
function.

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Thus, we can conclude that a family member with bad gambling habits will heavily affect the
family financially as gamble addicts will tend to put in a large sum of money or participate in
other forms of gambling.

When they fall into a tunnel of debts, reality would hit them emotionally and mindsets will be
filled with ways to clear their debt. They will turn to their relatives and friends, hoping that they
will be willing to lend them money to clear their debts but this seldom happens. In this case, it
will further frustrate them. They will become less sociable and thus affecting their social life.

3.8 Casinos’ Regulations


As for Singapore residents, there is a non-refundable entrance fee of $100 for each visit to the
casino. Alternatively, they can choose to purchase the annual pass at the price of $2000.

According to our survey, we collated the results and discovered that 75% of the respondents
believe that it will not stop gamblers from entering the casinos. The remaining 25% of them
chose ‘maybe’. None of the respondents believes that the $100 entrance fee is effective enough
to stop Singaporeans from going into the casinos so often. (Refer to Appendix G)

Many respondents commented that Singaporeans who intends to enter the casino are rich enough
to spend $100 every single time they enter, and as for those who are hardcore gamblers, we
assume that the $100 will not stop them from entering either.

This links back to the initial reason as to the reason for the government to post this rule. The
main objective is never to allow Singaporeans to treat gambling as a way to earn a living. On top
of that, they want Singaporeans would treat that expense as one of the criteria before
participating in the activities held in casinos.

If the government were to increase the levy, it will definitely reduce the interest of Singapore
residents as they can easily travel to other countries to gamble (Batam). Travelling to Batam will
cost them less than $50- including transport fees.

3.9 Respondents’ View towards Government Regulations


We shall now focus on another point, whether the government’s regulations are good enough to
prevent the disadvantages of compulsive gambling from happening too often.

According to the results, 55% of the respondents disagree with our view. We discovered that the
government came up with more regulations which would be enough to prevent the disadvantages
of compulsive gambling from happening too often. (Refer to Appendix H)

For instance, the minimum age to enter the casinos is stated to be 21 years-old instead of 18
years-old (all legal gaming activities are set as 18 years-old). It will decrease the percentage of
teenagers for being addicted to gambling.

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The government also set up a system of voluntary loss-limit. It is a measure that allows casino
patrons to voluntarily set a gambling budget or limit their losses in order to prevent over-
gambling and chasing of losses. With this idea in hand, the amount of money gambled will be
limited throughout the time period.

The casinos are also not allowed to extend credit to Singapore residents. This is to reduce the risk
of being troubled by the debts at any point of time due to over-gambling.

Furthermore, the Casino Control Act 2006 joined force. The Act establishes the Casino
Regulatory Authority of Singapore and the National Council on Problems Gambling (NCPG). It
provides the licensing for the casinos and their employees, the supervision, and casino operators,
the right to control.

Residents who are addicted to gambling are also able to seek help from the NCPG. They provide
hotline services and family counseling sessions.

However, our respondents have mentioned that even with all these regulations, they strongly
believe that there should still be more regulations to prevent an increase in hardcore gamblers.
Therefore in our opinion, the government had not done sufficiently to prevent negative issues
mentioned earlier on from happening.

3.10 Frequency of Visiting Casinos


Our respondents are mostly between the ages of 16-25. We posted a question regarding whether
they are interested in visiting the casinos and how frequent are they going to visit the casinos too.
The results shows that only 5% of them would visit the casinos once a month or slightly more
than that, 60% of them will visit once a year or slightly more or less than that, 35% of them will
never visit a casino and 0% (none of them) will go once every week or slightly more or less.
(Refer to Appendix I)

This shows a positive reflection on the respondents, as they have little interests in gambling.

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4. Conclusion

This report was done in view of the upcoming casinos in Singapore. Our purpose of the
report was to find out the views of Singaporeans on the establishment of the casinos in
Singapore. Our respondents have given us substantial information to identify the main
points of this report.

All in all, the views on casino in Singapore are generally positive. The surveys and
interviews conducted on the sample size of 30, brought across 3 main points – The
casino will increase the job opportunities for Singaporeans, the casino will boost the
economy due to an increase in tourism sector and influx of investors, and lastly,
Singaporeans feel that the government had not done enough to prevent the negative
issues from arising due to the establishment of casinos (eg. Social life of families with
members who engages in excessive gambling)

As mentioned above, we have collated the opinions and views on the 3 aspects of scope that
we are focusing on.

Firstly, the casino will increase the job opportunities for Singaporeans. Apart from the
results we obtained, there were reports of increase in job opportunities in Singapore.
We understand that there are different views on this statement. Some people feel that it
would increase job for Singaporeans. On the other hand, some voiced their concerns
that the job openings in the casinos will ultimately benefit the foreigners. Results have
shown that majority of the people agree to the statement mentioned.

Next, the casino will definitely boost the economy in Singapore. Referring to Appendix D,
respondents have shown that with the upcoming casinos in Singapore, it will attract
tourists and investors to invest in Singapore, and in turn, boost the economy.

Lastly, we have proved that Singaporeans agree that the Government had not done enough
to prevent all the negative issues that might arise due to the establishment of casinos.
According to Appendix H, 55% of the respondents agreed to our statement, while the
remaining 35% felt otherwise.

In conclusion, the views of Singaporeans on the establishment of casinos in Singapore are


generally positive, ie. They are supportive of the casinos being built in Singapore.

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5. Recommendations

To improve on the views on Singaporeans on casino in Singapore, we came up with a list of


suggestions.

5.1 Entrance fee of $1000


We considered that since many Singaporeans have given their opinion that $100 is too little for
entrance fee, we would collect a higher entrance fee instead. With a higher sum to pay, people
will think twice if they would want to enter.

5.2 Visiting Limitation


Apart from that, we feel that by limiting the number of hours that locals can stay inside, for
example, one hour a day, and also limiting the number of times they can visit the casino each
month, in due course, it will reduce the number of Singaporeans going bankrupt due to excessive
gambling at the casino.

5.3 Refundable Deposits


Next, instead of collecting the entrance fee, we can make it a deposit instead. That is, when
Singaporeans pay the sum, they get it back in the end. This is to ensure that in the case they lose
all their money from gambling, they would still have some money left to tide them through. With
these stringent rules, people will be more hesitant when entering the casino to gamble.

5.4 Membership
Another suggestion is that everyone that enters the casino has to sign up for membership before
they are allowed to go through. There will be a check on their background, credibility and credit
standing and to be a member, you must be of a certain financial level, of good background and
have good credibility. Although this will limit the number of people that enter the casino, it will
prevent addicted gamblers to enter the casinos. In a bigger picture, it will still benefit both ways,
to help keep these gamblers under control.

5.5 School Education

Schools can adopt a more positive and encouraging teaching method, allowing students from
their young age to know the cons of gambling. Likewise for sex education, it will provide them
with the information they need so that they are aware and will not make mistakes unknowingly.
For example, teaching them the symptoms of compulsive gambling and how to limit themselves.
Also, teaching them the purpose of creating this casino in the first place, boosting economy and
attracting foreign investors, creating jobs. This is to let students have a better understanding of

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casino, knowing the pros and cons of the casino, which will definitely make these students think
twice before entering the casino in the future.

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6. Appendixes

Appendix A

Appendix B

Appendix C

Appendix D

Appendix E

Appendix F

Appendix G

Appendix H

Appendix I

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7. Questionnaire
7.1 Interview Questions – Views on casino in Singapore

1. Do you think that by having the casino, it will increase job opportunities? Why?

2. In what way do you think the casino will affect Singapore’s economy in the recession?

___
______________

3. Do you think there is a possibility that there will be an increase in crime rates? If yes,
please state why.

4. Do you feel that Singaporeans are generally family-oriented? If yes, will having the
casino change the situation negatively?

5. With the casino in Singapore, will students be influenced to gamble too? Why?

6. Will job/academic performance be affected if more Singaporeans are gambling? How so?

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7. Overall, do you feel that having a casino in Singapore is to the country’s advantage or
disadvantage? Why?

8. Are the government regulations to prevent the above issues good enough? Eg.
Singaporeans to pay $100 to enter casino. Why?

Name: __

7.2 Survey Questions

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1. Please select one of the age range that you fall in.

a) 16 - 25

b) 26 - 35

c) 36 - 45

d) 46 and above

2. Do you think it is advisable to build a casino in Singapore?

a) Strongly agree

b) Agree

c) Disagree

d) Strong disagree

3. Do you think building a casino in Singapore will affect the reputation of her being an
“education hub”?

a) Strongly agree

b) Agree

c) Disagree

d) Strong disagree

4. Will having a casino in Singapore create more job opportunities’ for


Singaporeans?
a) Yes
b) No
c) Maybe

5. Casino will help to boost the economy by:

a) Attracting tourist to visit Singapore as they will spend money on lodging and this will
then help to circulate the economy.

b) Attracting Singaporeans to gamble in the casino

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c) Give both locals and foreigners an extra form of entertainment.

d) All of the above

6. In what way will it affect a family most if a member is overly active in the various forms
of entertainment provided by the casino?

a) Financially

b) Social life

c) Health

d) Education/Job performance

7. In what way do you think the casino will affect teenagers the most?

a) It will influence and encourage the youngsters to gamble

b) It will encourage youngsters to study harder to manage the casino in the future

c) It will cause family problems thus youngsters may adopt a very bad behavior due
to the family environment.

d) Youngsters may adopt the thinking that betting & gambling will be able to feed
them in the future.

e) It will not affect teenagers at all.

8. Do you think that Singaporeans will enter the casino even with the $100 regulation?
a) Strongly agree

b) Agree

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c) Disagree

d) Strong disagree

9. Regardless of whether you are for or against the upcoming casino in Singapore, do you think that it
is being located at the best strategic venue?

a) Strongly agree

b) Agree

c) Disagree

d) Strong disagree

10. From your point of view, how often do you think you would visit the casino if you are of age?

a) Once every week or slightly more or less

b) Once a month or slightly more or less

c) Once a year or slightly more

d) Never

List of the Interviewees

Contact
Name Gender Age Race Number Educational Institution
Frz M 17 Malay 91800960 NAFA
Yehao M 18 Chinese 96603302 Simei ITE
Nigel M 17 Chinese 96264315 Temasek Poly
Huichin F 17 Chinese 94779209 Singapore Poly
Serene Cheong F 21 Chinese 91015666 Ngee Ann Poly
Charissa F 20 Chinese 97825538 Ngee Ann Poly Graduate

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Serene F 17 Chinese 91076965 Ngee Ann Poly


Peixian F 17 Chinese 81801010 Ngee Ann Poly
Bryan Bay M 18 Chinese 91834116 Ngee Ann Poly
Eileen F 18 Chinese 91817542 Temasek Poly
Yulin F 19 Chinese 92740038 Singapore Poly

6. References

http://integratedresorts.com.sg/gov/
http://www.stopproblemgambling.org.sg/research/01/GamblingSurveyReport2008.pdf
http://www.singaporedice.com/workJobsAtMarinaBaySandsAndResortsWorldSentosa.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2006_in_Singapore
http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Southeast_Asia/GD20Ae02.html
http://www.getformesingapore.com/previous2006/150206_singaporecasinocontrolbill2006.htm

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