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Bahama gov't wants Isle of Capri to stay

5 April 2007

BAHAMAS – As reported by the Bahama Journal: "The government is close to convincing Isle of Capri to remain in the Bahamas a little longer, possibly avoiding a pullout of Grand Bahama's only casino operator, according to Minister of Tourism Obie Wilchcombe.

"Minister Wilchcombe indicated in an interview with the Bahama Journal Wednesday that the government was only a day away from concluding negotiations with Isle of Capri, a company that owns and operates 13 casinos at 11 locations.

"…The casino operator served notice in 2006 that it intended to pull out by June 2007, as it had been operating at a loss since opening its doors. Those financial woes were reportedly further exacerbated by the effects of twin hurricanes in September 2004 and another in the following year.

"The casino operator had asked the government to re-think the casino taxation system and had requested marketing and promotional dollars to keep the operation afloat since it was facing financial challenges.

"The closure of the casino would leave Grand Bahama with no operating gaming facilities considering that the fate of the Royal Oasis Resort in Freeport remains up in the air…"

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