No casinos in Paris...
Two options came out of the Duport report, released in early June, «for a new legal offer of games in Paris» : the opening of casinos or the creation of new gambling rooms in the French capital. The report highlighted that most of European capitals host casinos, apart from Paris and Rome and that a casino in Paris would amount to €46.5 millions in annual tax revenue for the French government. But the first option, which was disputed by a large number of politicians, by Paris’ councillors and by Enghien Casino, has been dismissed by the government. On Friday 12th June, Minister of the Interior Mr Cazeneuve announced he chose the second option, though without allowing slot machines.
... But exclusive gambling clubs
There will be London-style gambling clubs, possibly as early as 2016. It is quite a surprising decision after 8 out of 10 gambling halls have been shut down since 2008 because of scandals and money laundering suspicions. But unlike these notorious «cercles» which are associations under French Law, the new select London-style gambling clubs will be real commercial companies with a taxation regime inspired by casinos’, with frequent inspections. This decision about their status follows on from the will of the French government to moralize the gambling halls in Paris.
A relief for Enghien
After several months of debates and concern, staff members of the Barrière Casino in Enghien-les-bains, the only casino in Paris region, are relieved. The Duport report did mention financial compensation for Enghien city if a casino opened in Paris. But the city council was really happy to hear the news, since half of the city budget comes from the casino. French Union federation FO still expressed reservations, concerned that these clubs might become «small casinos in disguise».