Thailand Military Coup Provokes Mini Casino Boom in Cambodia



The Poipet Strip: nine casinos that are small a gambling no-man’s-land between the Cambodian and Thai passport control counters. (Image: scbsme.com)

While final month’s army coup in Thailand, which toppled the democratically elected government, may be considered a cause for concern to the worldwide community, it’s reportedly been a huge boon to the little Cambodian gambling city of Poipet, just over the border. Poipet has for ages been a destination that is popular the people of Thailand, where gambling on anything other than domestic horseracing and the national lottery is illegal, despite a general enthusiasm among the population.

But, the latest army junta’s authoritarian crackdown on illegal gambling enterprises and gambling dens in Thailand is directing the former customers of these unfortunate establishments eagerly towards the table games of Poipet.

Cambodia itself has a (loosely enforced) no-gambling policy but, fortunately for all involved, Poipet’s casino strip, containing nine smallish casinos, is cunningly situated in a type of gambling no-man’s-land between your Cambodian and Thai passport control counters.

Military Shut Down of Illegal Gambling

The influx remains something of the surprise to the Poipet operators, however, because into the days following the coup they reported that the number of people to the town had dropped considerably. At the beginning of June, managing director of Crown Resor Continue reading