Support of World Lottery Association sought for future expansion

SOE: The government would provide a seed money of about Nu 100 million as paid up capital to the Royal Bhutan Lottery Limited to enable it to start the lottery business from the first quarter of 2016.

Nearly fulfilling the pledge of restarting the lottery business, the new state owned enterprise (SOE), Royal Bhutan Lottery Limited, is taking shape. In an earlier interview with the finance minister, Lyonpo Namgay Dorji said that the incorporation process would be completed within October.

This takes the number of companies with government shareholding to 30 including those under Druk Holding and Investments and the newly incorporated Bhutan Duty Free Limited.

In the meet-the-press session held yesterday, the Prime Minister said that international experts on lottery has been consulted on the standards and procedures.

The finance minister told Kuensel that support of World Lottery Association (WLA) is being sought for expansion of business to other countries.

Upon receiving the approval of the relevant governments, operating logistics will be established and begin the operation on fulfilling the entire regulatory requirement. “For operation outside the country, the permission of the relevant government is being sought,” Lyonpo Namgay Dorji, said in an earlier interview.

However, to flag off, Royal Bhutan Lottery Limited will begin with domestic paper lottery within the first quarter of 2016 followed by online, regional and international operations in the second phase.

In the meet-the-press session, the finance minister told that vacancy for the post of chief executive officer for the company has also been advertised.

He said that following the CBI investigation on the lottery scam that surfaced in 2011, the government could not restart the business.

Meanwhile, the finance secretary has been appointed as the chairman of the Royal Bhutan Lottery Limited with Director General of Law and order (home ministry), Director of Bilateral affairs (foreign ministry), trade director and the CEO of the company as board members.

Tshering Dorji