State Development Minister Anthony Lynham.
State Development Minister Anthony Lynham. Che Chapman

GKI casino still long odds despite hunt for new casinos

THE Queensland Government is looking for new casino locations - but the Great Keppel Island casino remains long odds.

Speaking in Parliament in Brisbane on Thursday, State Development Minister Anthony Lynham said the government was accepting new integrated resort submissions after a proposed Cairns casino fell over.

Dr Lynham said about 12 groups had expressed interest in licences over the past 18 months.

"My Department of State Development has begun preliminary research to determine if there is genuine interest in the marketplace in another regional integrated resort development,” he said.

"An important part of the market sounding will be to understand current trends in the international resort and gaming industries.”

But a proposed GKI casino does not meet a number of criteria for an IRD licence.

According to the State Development Department an IRD applicant must be located within 70km of a city with a population of 150,000 people and be near an operational international airport.

GKI casino developer Tower Holdings did not respond to a request for comment on Thursday.

Dr Lynham said any successful applicant needed to drive international tourism.

"Mr Speaker, this government understands that IRDs can be an important catalyst for boosting international tourism,” he said.

"And we are only interested in developments that will draw international tourists to Queensland and create jobs.”