New Zealand May Extend Sky City Casino License if Convention Center Built

New Zealand’s government may extend Sky City Entertainment Group Ltd. (SKC)’s casino license and allow more tables and machines at its Auckland site in exchange for the company building a convention center.

Changes to gambling regulations and legislation will be discussed as part of the negotiations with Sky City, Economic Development Minister David Carter said in an e-mailed statement. The government will not reduce the age of entry to casinos or allow Sky City an Internet gaming license or additional casino licenses, he said.

Sky City has been selected as preferred developer of a New Zealand International Convention Center in Auckland, Chief Executive Officer Nigel Morrison said yesterday. The company will pay the full NZ$350 million ($287 million) construction cost, the company said in a statement.

The 3,500 seat center would attract an estimated NZ$90 million of international spending a year and employ 800 people, Carter said. Any changes to gambling legislation would be subject to a full public submission process. Sky City’s license expires in 2021.

To contact the reporter on this story: Tracy Withers in Wellington at twithers@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Iain Wilson iwilson2@bloomberg.net

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