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Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Vietnam - HCM City marks Cambodia’s Liberation Day

January 7, 1979 was the a very violent day the Vietnamese soldiers invading Cambodia. The day that Cambodia had lost so many things which we are mourning until today. After Vietnamese soldiers invaded Cambodia, they robbed everything including raped women and children and also killing them very cruel.

The 31st anniversary of Cambodia ’s Liberation Day (January 7) was celebrated in Ho Chi Minh City on January 5.

Prominent amongst the participants were Truong Minh Nhut, the President of the city’s Vietnam-Cambodia Friendship Association and Luon Kim Khuon, Cambodian Consul General to Ho Chi Minh City .

They both stated that Liberation Day is a historical milestone for the spirit of international solidarity and the special friendship between Vietnam and Cambodia .

Over the past 30 years, relations between the two countries have been taken to new heights.

Cooperation and friendship between cities and provinces in both countries, especially Ho Chi Minh City and Phnom Penh, have also constantly developed.

On behalf of the Cambodian people and Government, Luon Kim Khuon expressed thanks to Vietnam for its assistance during Cambodia ’s struggle for national liberation in the past and its current reconstruction. He also expressed his gratitude to the Vietnamese soldiers who fought and died during the war in Cambodia
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Cambodia Aims for 700,000 Tonnes 2010 Rice Exports

Jan 6 - Cambodia could export as much as 700,000 tonnes of rice this year, exporters and government officials said on Wednesday, as the country steps up its efforts to become a leading shipper of the grain.

"I think we have the ability. We can do it," Chan Tong Yves, a secretary of state at the Agriculture Ministry, told Reuters, referring to the capacity to ship that volume of milled rice.

After decades of upheaval, the Southeast Asian country enjoyed a decade of relative stability and strong economic growth until the global crisis caused an economic contraction last year.

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Cambodia exported 500,000 tonnes of rice in 2008. No figures are yet available for 2009.

Demand for Southeast Asian rice is growing from the Middle East and big importers such as the Philippines. Thailand is the world's biggest exporter, followed by Vietnam since India enforced a ban on rice exports in late 2007.

Ny Lyheng, deputy general manager of Cambodian rice export firm Baitang (Kampuchea) PLC, said efforts were being made to improve the quality of local rice in order to sell more, seeing potential in the European Union, United States, Canada, Australia, the Philippines and Russia.

He said the European market had been duty-free for Cambodian rice since last September, under the EU's "Everything But Arms" initiative aimed at supporting exports from poor countries.

"The world is paying attention to us because Cambodia is becoming an emerging rice market," Lyheng said.

He estimated that his Baitang company could contribute about 300,000 tonnes of the 700,000 tonnes Cambodia was forecast to export this year.
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Bulldozer crushes 400,000 pirated CDs in Cambodia

Phnom Penh, Jan 6 : Cambodian authorities used a bulldozer to crush 400,000 CDs and DVDs in a crackdown on piracy, national media reported Wednesday.

Police drove the machine over the pile of counterfeit discs that were stacked on the road outside Wat Phnom, the capital's landmark Buddhist temple.

The Cambodia Daily newspaper reported that the discs were either pirated copies of local music and films, or foreign pornographic movies. Most were confiscated from shops in and around Phnom Penh.

Kong Kantara, an under-secretary of state at the Ministry of Culture, told the newspaper that the authorities have stepped up efforts to combat piracy of intellectual property.

"In 2008 we destroyed only 100,000 CDs and DVDs, but (in 2009) we cooperated closely with the Ministry of Interior to raid every pirating place that steals content from film companies," he said.

"We did not arrest offenders, but we fined them according to the copyright law because they pirated the CDs and DVDs from the (rightful) owners," Kong Kantara added.

Under Cambodian law vendors who sell counterfeit discs face fines of around USD 2 per disc if they are caught. The authorities said they plan to expand the crackdown across the country.

Movie and music piracy is commonplace in Cambodia, and many shops openly sell copies of both foreign and local movies and CDs for between USD 1 and 2 apiece.
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Elixir Gaming Technologies Announces Participation Consolidation Agreement with Leading Cambodian Casino Resort NagaWorld

- New Agreement Includes Expanded Operations and Favorable Consolidated Contract Terms –
- Elixir Gaming in Final Stages of Asset Valuation Analysis and Anticipates Recording Non-Cash Impairment Charge of $11.5-$13.5 Million –

HONG KONG--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Elixir Gaming Technologies, Inc. (NYSE Amex:EGT) (“Elixir Gaming” or “the Company”), a leading technology and solutions provider to the Pan-Asian gaming industry, today announced that it has entered into a Machine Operation Participation Consolidation Agreement (“Agreement”) with NagaWorld Limited (“NagaWorld”), a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Hong Kong listed NagaCorp Ltd. (HKSE:3918), which includes a commitment to place an additional 200 electronic gaming machines on a participation basis at its NagaWorld casino resort. In addition, the Agreement serves to amend and consolidate terms for all Elixir Gaming machine operations at NagaWorld, including increasing the overall average revenue share to Elixir Gaming to 25% and extending the contract duration. Elixir Gaming currently operates 440 gaming machine seats at NagaWorld, which achieved average win per unit per day (WUD) of over $200 for the months of November and December 2009. NagaWorld is a luxury casino resort in Cambodia and is the only licensed full service casino in and around the capital city of Phnom Penh.

Under the terms of the Agreement, Elixir Gaming exercised its option pursuant to its July 25, 2009 expansion contract to place 200 additional electronic gaming machine seats (“Additional Machines”) in certain prime areas of NagaWorld’s casino lobby floor and will share in the gross revenue generated by each of these machines. Elixir Gaming anticipates 120 of the Additional Machines to be in operation within the first quarter of 2010 and the remaining 80 to be in operation within the second quarter of 2010. In addition, the Agreement serves to amend and consolidate the terms of the Company’s prior contracts with NagaWorld, which will have the effect of regulating all slot and operations management of a maximum of 640 gaming machine seats at NagaWorld. The amended and consolidated terms are effective December 30, 2009.

Under these terms, Elixir Gaming and NagaWorld will have joint control over the operation of all the Company’s electronic gaming machine seats, including floor staff and respective audit rights. Elixir Gaming and NagaWorld will share the revenue and certain operating costs, such as marketing and floor staff, at a 25% / 75% split, respectively, and Elixir Gaming will receive on a daily basis its relevant portion of the daily win in cash. The contract duration is six years and expires on February 28, 2016. Furthermore, the terms include a first right of refusal for any other suitable and available areas for the operation of electronic gaming machines on the casino lobby floor of NagaWorld under the terms of this Agreement. Elixir Gaming would generally have a period of two months from the time of availability to consider the placement of its units in the relevant area and no additional commitment fee would be required for the placement in such area provided that the Company’s total number of operating gaming machine seats do not exceed 640.

In consideration for the Agreement, Elixir Gaming shall pay to NagaWorld a $1.38 million one-time non-refundable contract amendment fee and an upfront commitment fee of $4.10 million for the Additional Machines. Both the one-time contract amendment fee and commitment fee are to be paid in three installments. The first 50% installment thereof was paid on December 30, 2009, the second 25% payment thereof is due on or before January 15, 2010, and the third and final 25% installment is due on or before January 31, 2010.

Elixir Gaming will be entitled to 100% of the WUD from the Additional Machines until it has received the accumulated total of $5.47 million (the $4.10 million commitment fee plus Elixir Gaming’s 25% share of the WUD). As with all of the Company’s gaming machine seats placed under an upfront commitment fee arrangement, Elixir Gaming collects 100% of the cash gross net win from these units of which 25% is recorded as revenue.

Clarence Chung, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Elixir Gaming, commented, “We are pleased to work with our partner NagaWorld to continue to expand its slot floor operations. With the addition of these 200 units, Elixir Gaming’s installed machine base at NagaWorld is expected to reach 640 seats during the second quarter of 2010. With these additional units, Elixir Gaming will have gaming machines installed covering most of the currently available prime ground floor slot space at NagaWorld. Given NagaWorld’s position as the exclusive casino license holder in the Phnom Penh area and our demonstrated success with our current slot operations at NagaWorld, we feel confident that we can continue to drive strong growth in participation revenue and cash flow with these additional placements.”

Also today, Elixir Gaming announced it is in the final stages of its annual valuation review of its gaming machine assets as required by U.S. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP). The review is being conducted in an effort to formulate the Company’s future deployment plans and determine the usability of its machines with a view to optimize machine performance. In accordance with GAAP and subject to final evaluation by an independent valuation firm, the Company anticipates recording a non-cash impairment charge in the range of $11.5 to $13.5 million as of December 31, 2009.

A substantial portion of the impairment is the write-down to fair market value of certain gaming machines in inventory deemed as non-performing for the Company’s current target markets or their customers’ preferences. To a lesser extent, the impairment also includes the write-down of the Company’s Philippine operations’ gaming assets based on whether the current carrying value of the machines in operation in this market is higher than the expected value as forecasted by the projected future cash flows. The Company considers the write-down prudent based on its assessment of gaming machine performance in its respective markets.

While the Company believes the Philippines remains a viable market for Elixir Gaming and its operations there are expected to continue to be a meaningful contributor to positive cash flow, based on market knowledge gained from its operating experience over the last year, the Company has re-evaluated its growth assumptions for its operations in this market. Despite the downward revision of the revenue assumptions, with the benefit of the ramp-up of several immature venues and targeted marketing initiatives the Company still expects to improve average WUD in the Philippines in the range of 20% to 30% from current levels over the next two to three years.

The Company anticipates it will purchase additional gaming machines to supplement existing inventory and source future targeted deployment plans. Given the Company’s strong current and projected future cash flow generation capability from its operations at NagaWorld (including the recoupment of commitment fees paid and the Company’s share of net wins from its machine installed base at NagaWorld), the state of the previously-owned gaming machine market, and its strong relationships with gaming equipment manufacturers, Elixir Gaming anticipates funding its 2010 gaming machine purchases for its existing project pipeline from cash on hand and expected net cash flow from operations.

Clarence Chung concluded, “Elixir Gaming remains focused on and committed to its operations in its existing markets of Cambodia and the Philippines. The valuation review of our gaming machine assets will complete the Company’s restructuring of its operations under our new management and the resulting write-down will not only help the Company to better align revenue and the related costs but also will rationalize the carrying value of the assets against the projected income for the Philippines market. Further, the reduced depreciation expense will accelerate the time needed for us to achieve positive GAAP earnings.

“With the completion of our restructuring, our improved financial flexibility, and continued strong cash flow projected from our operations at NagaWorld, we feel confident we now have the right operating model, experience, and relationships to capitalize on high-potential growth opportunities in the emerging Asian gaming markets and to enhance shareholder value.”

About Elixir Gaming Technologies, Inc.

Elixir Gaming Technologies, Inc. (NYSE Amex:EGT) is a provider of gaming technology solutions. The Company secures long-term contracts to provide comprehensive turn-key solutions to 3, 4, and 5 star hotels and other well-located venues in Asia that seek to offer casino gaming products. The Company retains ownership of the gaming machines and systems and receives recurring daily fees based on an agreed upon percentage of the net gaming win per machine and provides on-site maintenance. The Company has established a strategic presence in the Asia Pacific region with a focus on the Philippines and Cambodia markets. For more information please visit

About NagaCorp Ltd.

NagaCorp Ltd. (3918.HK) operates NagaWorld, the only licensed 5-Star Hotel Casino Resort in Phnom Penh, the capital of Cambodia. NagaCorp holds a casino license issued by the Royal Government of Cambodia, which gives the company the rights to operate the casino for 70 years commencing January 1995 with 41 years exclusivity within a 200 kilometer radius of Phnom Phen (except the Cambodia-Vietnam boarder area, Bokor, Kirirom Mountains, and Sihanoukville.) One of Cambodia’s most popular tourist destinations, NagaWorld currently has, among others, 508 rooms, 176 table games, a premium meeting, incentive travel, convention, and exhibition (MICE) facility, a retail shopping area, a collection of restaurants and bars, a karaoke lounge, and a spa. NagaCorp Ltd. is incorporated in Cayman Islands with limited liability and its securities are listed on the Main Board of The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited.

Forward Looking Statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements concerning Elixir Gaming, within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Those forward-looking statements include statements regarding expectations for the business of Elixir Gaming, its working capital requirements and future revenue and profitability. Such statements are subject to certain risks and uncertainties, and actual circumstances, events or results may differ materially from those projected in such forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause or contribute to differences include, but are not limited to, risks related to Elixir Gaming’s inability to place gaming machines at significant levels, whether the gaming machines placed generate the expected amount of net-win, the ability of Elixir Gaming to acquire additional capital as and when needed, the ability of Elixir Gaming to collect revenue and protect its assets and those other risks set forth in Elixir Gaming’s annual report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2008 filed with the SEC on March 30, 2009 and our Form 10-Q for the three months ended September 30, 2009 filed on November 10, 2009. Elixir Gaming cautions readers not to place undue reliance on any forward-looking statements. Elixir Gaming does not undertake, and specifically disclaims any obligation to update or revise such statements to reflect new circumstances or unanticipated events as they occur.

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Trade between Cambodia and Vietnam down 26 per cent

Phnom Penh - The global economic crisis caused a 26 per cent slump in trade between Cambodia and Vietnam through November, but officials in both countries expect a strong rebound this year, national media reported Wednesday. Two-way trade between the south-east Asian neighbours stood at 1.175 billion dollars, statistics released by the Vietnamese embassy in Phnom Penh revealed. Vietnamese exports to Cambodia made up the lion's share, worth 1.017 billion dollars.

The commercial attache at the Vietnamese embassy told the Cambodia Daily newspaper that trade would likely double between the two nations this year. That echoed earlier comments made by Cambodia's commerce minister.

"The economic (ties) between Vietnam and Cambodia in investment and trade are growing," said the embassy's Le Bien Cuong, predicting improved figures in a number of areas particularly commodities and construction materials.

Vietnam, a close political ally, is also a key investor in Cambodia with significant interests in agribusiness, telecoms and banking. Last month the two nations signed an agreement that could result in investments worth billions of dollars, including one for a bauxite mining concession.

Exports of fuel and steel products totalling 560 million dollars made up more than half of Vietnam's exports to Cambodia. Bilateral trade stood at 1.64 billion dollars in 2008, up from 1.2 billion dollars the previous year.
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Cambodia lectures Lao officials on temple dispute with Thailand

Vientiane - Cambodia's deputy foreign minister visited Laos to provide a background briefing on Preah Vihear, an 11th-century Hindu temple on the Thai-Cambodian border that has sparked a nasty diplomatic spat between the two countries, news reports said Wednesday. Long Visalo on Tuesday gave a lecture to more than 200 Lao Foreign Ministry officials on the history of Preah Vihear and the border dispute it has created between Laos' southern neighbours, the government-run Vientiane Times reported.

The ongoing diplomatic rift between the two countries has raised serious questions about the cohesiveness of the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN), of which Cambodia, Thailand and Laos are members.

Cambodia has attempted to involve ASEAN in resolving the border dispute, but Thailand has refused, arguing that it is an issue that should be settled bilaterally.

Long Visalo noted that the International Court of Justice ruled in 1962 that Preah Vihear was under the sovereignty of Cambodia and in July 2008 UNESCO listed the temple as a World Heritage Site.

Thailand objected to the UNESCO listing on the grounds that a plot of land adjoining the temple is still subject to a border dispute.

A diplomatic spat over the listing escalated into a tense standoff last year between the two countries' armies near Preah Vihear, which left several soldiers on both sides dead.
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