Cambodia continues to double down on its efforts of keeping the online gambling industry clean. To this end, the country’s telecommunications regulator has been able to suspend access to 15 illegal online lottery websites. Cambodia stopped issuing new online gambling licenses on January 1, 2020, making it clear that interactive gambling would have no place in the country.
No New Licenses, But Many Rogue Operators
Instead, Cambodia has focused on promoting its resorts to boost its tourism and appease China, an important regional partner who insisted on discontinuing certain forms of gambling in the country. Meanwhile, the telecommunications watchdog said that it would continue to cooperate with the National Police and other relevant authorities to strike down illegal online gambling and lottery services.
The U-turn on gambling in the industry also saw Cambodia start working closely with overseas partners in a bid to crackdown on international money laundering and scams based either inside or outside the country. The newest efforts target 15 new websites, but they are far from the only illegal operators.
In November last year, Cambodia shut down 79 illegal gambling websites, arguing that they posed dangers to public security. Since then, authorities have only intensified their bid to shut down such operations.
Cambodia Criticized for Human Trafficking
Meanwhile, police managed to free 60 people who had become victims of human trafficking in the country and were forced to work in illegal online gambling operations. Cambodia has faced some criticism, especially in the case of the NagaCorp worker protests.
Workers were laid off en masse, which prompted long protests. The government has decided to act in a manner that many alleged backed the integrated resort operator. Many protesters also face jail time now, which has led to international outrage. Both NagaCorp and Cambodia have denied any complicity in the manner.
Cambodia has also been criticized for the ongoing human trafficking in illegal casinos and the United States issued a warning to travelers and businesses.