The Queensland government has rubbished speculation of more poker machines coming to Gold Coast gambling venues.
Opposition leaders insist the Palaszcuzuk administration will have to increase the statewide cap on pokies games in order to build a second casino in the south-eastern tourist hotspot.
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Tourism minister Kate Jones dismissed those suggestions outright when she addressed the media earlier this week.
“We have said very clearly that we do not want to see an increase in poker machines on the Gold Coast and we are standing by that commitment,” she said.
“We’ve said very clearly we’ll work very carefully with clubs and pubs on the Gold Coast and we’ll stand by our commitment to not see a net increase.”
It was recently revealed that government officials had approached several licensed venues on the Gold Coast with a proposition to buy up some of their existing gaming machines.
It is understood the state is seeking as many as 1,600 pokies to fill out the gaming floors of the proposed Global Tourism Hub.
Liberal leader Deb Frecklington claims those numbers can only be achieved by bringing more pokies to the Gold Coast, but Jones disagrees.
“This is about the long term sustainability of our clubs and also ensuring that we’re providing world-class tourism options on the Gold Coast,” she said.
“Deb Frecklington wanted to put a casino on the Spit with up to 2,500 pokies, she’s got to stop playing games with the tourism industry on the Gold Coast.”
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