ECONOMY

Hyatt Regency wins Tirana casino license

TIRANA (Reuters) – Greece’s Hyatt Regency has won a $10 million 15-year casino license in the Albanian capital of Tirana, the first of five gambling permits the government plans to issue, authorities said yesterday. A statement from the Finance Ministry said Hyatt Regency had won the bid, while sources close to the deal said the building and development plan proposed by Hyatt was better than that of Greek rival Club Hotel Loutraki. The casino will be built and operated by a consortium of Hyatt’s 60 percent-owned subsidiary Gaming Investment Overseas and Albanian investors. Neighboring Greece is Albania’s second-largest trading partner after Italy and a major foreign investor. Albania will also launch tenders for four casino licences along the country’s Adriatic and Ionian coasts, including one in Sarande, a tourist town across from the Greek holiday island of Corfu.