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Catalonia paves the road for 'BCN World' $6 billion resort by issuing the urban project and reducing casino taxes

On Thursday, the Catalan Government published the new legal project for the area where ‘BCN World’ will be built, in order to modify the existing town-planning project and other rules. In addition, it will also modify the current taxes on gambling, dropping them from a maximum rate of 55% to 10%. The modification of such taxes was one of the changes the Catalan Government had promised international investors in order to develop the mega resort, which will see the construction of 6 casinos and hotels the size of those in Las Vegas. In addition, the resort will have golf courses, a beach club, a marina, a smart residential city area, shopping centres, theatres, conference centres and other attractions. Two weeks ago, the first three international investors participating in the project were announced. Plans are to start construction of the first casino in September.

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14 June 2013 01:26 AM

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ACN

Barcelona (ACN).- On Thursday, the Catalan Government published the new legal project for the area where \u2018BCN World\u2019 will be built, in order to modify the existing town-planning project and other rules. This would allow starting construction in September, as planned by the investors. In addition, it has also issued a legislative project that significantly modifies the current taxes on gambling, dropping them from a maximum rate of 55% to 10%. The modification of such taxes was one of the changes the Catalan Government had promised international investors in order to develop the \u2018BCN World\u2019 resort, which will see the construction of 6 casinos and hotels the size of those in Las Vegas, with 2,000 hotel rooms each. The resort will be built at the heart of the Costa Daurada, in Salou and Vila-seca, next to the PortAventura amusement park. The $6 billion project will also have golf courses, a beach club, a marina, a smart residential city area, shopping centres, theatres, conference centres and other attractions. Two weeks ago, the first three international investors participating in the project were announced. They are the hotel group Melià, the British shopping centre company Value Retail and the Chinese casino company Melco, run by the Ho family who has several casinos in Macao, Taiwan, Philippines and Japan. With the company promoting the entire \u2018BCN World\u2019 project, Veremonte, they will altogether invest up to $1 billion in building the first of the six resorts as from next September. It will have 300,000 square metres. Plans are to open the doors of this first casino in 2016.


As of Thursday, the project that is updating the legal framework to develop a macro resort in Vila-seca and Salou was published in order to be presented to the shareholders and the citizens. Once the public information period is over, the Catalan Government will approve the plan in July and will pass it to the Catalan Parliament for its definitive approval. Together, the Catalan Ministries of Economy and Knowledge, Territory and Sustainability, and Business and Employment have drafted the plan update, since the original plan was approved 20 years ago for the construction of PortAventura theme park. The project \u201Cmodifies and adapts to the current needs\u201D the law on tourist centres and resorts, in order to allow a resort with hotels, convention centres, entertainment offers, casinos and retail spaces, in line with the new tourist attractions competing at a world level. In addition, it modifies the urban plan of the area.

The urban plan will set the land use and the construction limits, limiting the concrete surface to 30% of the tourist resort. The plan also allows for developing gambling activities in the tourist centre of Vila-seca and Salou. Public competitions will be organised to allow up to 6 licenses to be issued for casinos within the area. Furthermore, shops will be allowed to open for longer hours, according to the uses of the tourist areas.

Regarding taxation, on the same day, the Catalan Government issued a legal project to modify taxes paid by casinos. The current law has four different rates, according to the income of the casinos. The maximum rate was set at 55%, then 45%, 35% and 20%. Now, the new project will have a maximum rate of only 10%. Despite the significant reduction of the rate, the Catalan Government foresees maintaining the revenue levels since gambling activities will increase in Catalonia with the opening of BCN World casinos.

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  • The land where 'BCN World' will be built next to the PortAventura theme park (by ACN)

  • The land where 'BCN World' will be built next to the PortAventura theme park (by ACN)