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Video games sales forecast to reach 17.8 trillion won in 2011

South Korea’s gaming industry will likely see its sales reach nearly 18 trillion won ($15.6 billion) by the end of this year, mainly due to an increase in lottery sales, industry data showed Sunday.

Sales of six legal gaming sectors including lottery, casino and horse-racing are expected to reach 17.8 trillion won this year, equivalent to more than 1.5 percent of the country’s gross domestic product, according to the data compiled by the National Gaming Control Commission.

The figure would likely bulk up to a total of 76.3 trillion, or 6.5 percent of GDP, if illegal gambling sales estimated at 58.5 trillion won are included, the commission said.

The expected jump in gambling sales come on the heels of a boom in the lottery market.

South Korea launched a “pension lottery” in July, which pays out prize money to winners in installments over 20 years. It is gaining popularity here amid a grim economic outlook.

The commission predicted total lottery sales to reach 3.1 trillion won this year, surpassing the government’s target ceiling for the first time since 2009.

The gaming industry for Asia’s fourth-largest economy is huge.

Its sales for 2008 only trailed Greece, Italy and Canada among the members of Organizations for Economic Cooperation and Development.

(Yonhap News)
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