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Compliance Updates

The Peach State’s gambling supporters eagerly anticipating the 2019 legislation

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The supporters of pari-mutuel and casino gambling in Georgia have been pushing for the inclusion of a legislation in the General Assembly session of next year.  A scrutiny released on Wednesday by the  Georgia Horse Racing Coalition shows an integrated project of a racetrack and a casino in suburban Atlanta with a 300-room hotel, along with an entertainment centre and lounge venues. The facility holds the potential to generate up to US$1.2 billion a year.

In view of this, the Georgia Representative, Brett Harrell, R-Snellville, said that he is planning to present the proposal to the House Rural Development Council after the current legislative session ends next week and work hand-in-hand  with state Senator Brandon Beach, R-Alpharetta, to introduce a legislation during the 2019 legislative session that would give go-ahead to three venues in different parts of the Peach State.

Harrell emphasised that “A horse racing facility would create thousands of jobs, deliver tens of millions in new state and local tax dollars and bring new revenues and business development to rural Georgia through its equine industry. Georgia is one of only six states that have no gaming outside of its lottery, and I believe horse racing would bring together different strengths our state has in tourism and agriculture,” he added.

Despite the efforts, this is not the first time that supporters have tried to legalise casino gambling in the state. A previous plan even included measures to increase tourism and raise additional revenue for the state’s scholarship programme. However, the legislation died because of the oppositions from the Governor Nathan Deal and General Assembly members.

The report carried out by The Lewis Group established that a racetrack-casino with an investment of US$525 million would create over  4,000 construction jobs and approximately 2,300 permanent jobs. It would also generate US$210 million in state and local taxes during its first year of operations.

Beach said: “This report gives lawmakers a clear vision of what a horse racing facility would contribute to Georgia.  We will  work to pass legislation that enables a horse racing track in Georgia that is one of the nicest in the world.”

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Compliance Updates

eGaming Integrity Launches to Enhance Compliance for OGRA Licence Holders and CSPs

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We proudly announce the official launch of eGaming Integrity, a specialised compliance services provider exclusively dedicated to protecting OGRA licence holders and the CSPs that support them.

Our mission is to enable online gambling operators, and the CSPs that support them, with the tools they need to thrive in the Isle of Man, ensuring integrity, transparency, and adherence to industry standards.

The Isle of Man eGaming sector continues to grow at a rapid pace, with the number of OGRA licensees more than doubling in recent years. With the sector having grown so quickly, it has led to a shortage of highly qualified, well trained, and egaming experienced compliance and AML professionals locally. This skills shortage presents a significant challenge for online gambling operators licensed here.

With our team of industry experts and former regulators, eGaming Integrity enables businesses to remain compliant with the stringent regulatory requirements under the Isle of Man licence through our tailored services which include mock audits, remediation, and internal audits.

Speaking about the requirement for such services, Emma Shilling, eGaming Integrity director said “licensed online gambling operators and local Corporate Service Providers have been looking for a credible provider to offer specialist services beyond day-to-day compliance. We’ve already helped several CSPs navigate the sector in previous roles, where eGaming isn’t always the primary area of expertise so businesses have sought our experience and industry knowledge to help them service their clients more effectively.”

Fellow director, Nick Bowden added “our in-depth evaluations prepare operators for regulatory visits, remediation support to bring businesses back into good standing with the regulator, and independent assurance makes sure risk management, governance and internal control processes are operating effectively.

eGaming Integrity are now working with a number of OGRA licence holders and local CSPs, providing customised compliance and regulatory advisory services that align with business objectives and operational intricacies.

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Australia

Australia Enforces Credit Card Ban for Online Gambling

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Australia has enforced an online gambling credit card ban, meaning that players can no longer use them as a payment method.

Responsible Wagering Australia (RWA) and its members have been strong supporters of this measure and have worked with the Commonwealth Government and the financial services industry since 2021 to deliver this credit card ban.

Responsible Wagering Australia CEO Kai Cantwell said that this change was much needed, as Australians should only be gambling with money that they have.

“This is an important measure to protect customers, making it easier for people to stay in control of their own gambling behaviour,” Mr Cantwell said.

“It will complement the existing offering of safer gambling account management tools by RWA members.

“RWA and its members support the extension of this measure to all forms of gambling that have been exempted from the ban such as lotteries and keno.

“If consumer protection measures aren’t consistent across all forms of gambling it will incentivise vulnerable Australians to move to less-regulated types of gambling, where they are more at risk of harm.”

RWA members provide a range of tools to ensure people can gamble safely, many of which have been adopted by the Commonwealth Government as part of the National Consumer Protection Framework (NCPF).

“The NCPF is expected to be evaluated shortly and we look forward to engaging in this process to ensure that consumer protection tools are fit-for-purpose and support a safe and sustainable regulated gambling environment,” Mr Cantwell said.

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Compliance Updates

Ukraine Regulator KRAIL Blocks 371 Illegal Gambling Sites

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The Ukrainian Commission for the Regulation of Gambling and Lotteries (KRAIL) has announced that it has blocked 371 unlicensed gambling websites. It said joint action with the security service led to the issue of Order No. 451/2256, which instructs service providers to block the domains using Domain Name System (DNS) servers.

KRAIL said that during April and May it issued 1000 orders to limit access to domain names and subdomains.

While KRAIL remains operational, Ukraine’s parliament voted in April to disband the regulator. There had been criticism of the regulator’s collegial structure, which requires at least five of its six members to be present for meetings to be valid. Amid disruption caused by military service following the Russian invasion, this has often led to meetings being cancelled and long delays for licence applications.

There will be a second reading of the bill before it can be signed by President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. The liquidation of KRAIL would put gambling regulation under the digital transformation ministry until a new regulator is established.

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