As a result of the ongoing COVID-19 closure, the Canadian Gaming Association (CGA) has announced that it will shortly begin a survey aimed at better understanding what resources and assistance the industry needs.
Furthermore, the CGA has released information on the effects that the COVID-19 outbreak had on the industry for use by organisations that are in negotiations with government partners.
An association statement read: “As COVID-19 continues to spread across Canada, our gaming industry is doing its part by closing down casinos, casino amenities, and community gaming centres. This is unprecedented and will have far-reaching impacts, not just on employees, but also the various businesses and suppliers that work with us.
“The Canadian Gaming Association is reaching out to the Federal government and our provincial government partners to advocate for support for our industry and employees, suppliers, and operators, so when it is safe to re-open, we can return to delivering strong results for our partners and communities.
“We support taking whatever steps are necessary to slow the spread of COVID-19 and save lives. We will work with the government to ensure that our industry rides out this closure and emerges as a strong employer and economic partner.”
About the numbers, the association announced that nearly all of the 114 casinos in Canada, along with more than 200 permanent bingo halls and community gaming centres, were closed in a 72-hour period.
In addition, figures from the CGA also show that the Canadian gaming industry offers about 182,5000 jobs with an average salary of $65,000. In addition, it is reported that the country’s gaming sector generates nearly $1bn in employee salaries, $1.2bn in products and services, while also generating monthly income for government and charities approaching $765million.
The statement concluded: “Closing down our land-based casino industry is also a significant hit to gaming equipment suppliers, many who are based in Canada, as what is compromised due to COVID-19 is the chain reaction created through the purchase of goods and services needed to sustain casino operations which is worth $14.6 billion annually or $1.2 billion each month.
“In addition to the gaming revenue generated, a further $1.0 billion comes from non-gaming revenue, through meals from our restaurants; shows in our theatres; room bookings, conferences and meetings in our hotels; and shopping at retail stores on our properties. This too is threatened.
“We want to ensure the industry is on the proper footing to continue fulfilling our role as quickly as possible after this crisis. But more critically, we want to make sure we have the opportunity to get as many employees as possible back to work as soon as possible.”