Penghu County Government applied for the referendum after Taiwan government approved casino legislation in January

Residents of Taiwan’s offshore Penghu archipelago are expected to vote in a referendum on casino gambling in August.

The central government will prepare a package of accompanying measures because the legalization of casinos is likely to influence the environment, the quality of travel and the law-and-order situation, government spokesman Su Jun-pin told Taiwan News.

The Penghu County Government applied for the referendum in April.

Reports are that Transportation Minister Mao Chi-kuo will chair a gambling supervisory commission made up of vice ministers and experts, modeled on the example of Singapore. If Penghu voters approve the establishment of casinos, Mao’s ministry will probably form a management department to supervise Taiwan’s implementation of casinos.

The country’s Legislative Yuan approved the legalization of casino gaming in January after years of evaluation and fierce debates between supporters and opponents. According to the legislation, only two casinos will be allowed in the earliest phase, and they will have to form part of 1,000-room hotel and leisure complexes. A third casino will have to wait 10 years for legalization.