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How New Gaming Legislation Affects Gaming at Online Casinos

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How New Gaming Legislation Affects Gaming at Online Casinos
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When most people place a bet at online blackjack, they expect a winning hand. Slot fans want to hit the jackpot while roulette players hope the wheel stops at their predicted number. Unfortunately, new online gamine legislation doesn’t always deliver a winning hand to the casino industry.

This article explores how the series of new gaming laws around the world have been affecting how people gamble online.

Credit Card Ban in the UK

Last year, the UK government enforced a law to ban online gamblers from using credit cards at iGaming websites. The ban applies to all forms of online gambling, from playing slots to buying lottery tickets.

The UK banned credit cards because they “can lead to significant financial harm.” That’s according to Neil McArthur, the CEO of the UKGC. According to McArthur, 22% of problem gamblers in the UK use credit cards for payments.

In that case, banning credit cards could lower the number of problem gamblers in Britain. However, it also means British gamblers will need to rely on money in their banks to play slots and card games.

New Lottery Laws in Finland

Finland is the latest country in Europe to strengthen its online gambling laws. Like the UK, Finland is introducing new gambling laws with an intention to protect its citizens from problem gambling.

The new Finnish gambling law, also known as arpajaislaki in Finnish, is comprehensive and has far-reaching consequences. It affects how Finns deposit money to foreign casinos, how operators advertise and verify their customers. To be clear, players in Finland can still gamble through offshore casinos. But they have to follow the new rules introduced under the lottery law.

Legal Sports Betting in Canada

After years of debates in parliament, Canada finally legalized single-sports betting June this year. In the past, Canadians had to place parlays if they wanted to predict sports outcomes. Now, they can wager on a single team like the rest of the world.

Canadian provinces will make the blueprint on how to run online sports betting websites. Ontario has already launched a fully-fledged online sportsbook while more provinces are in the same process.

In case you’re wondering, Canada is yet to legalize online casinos at a federal level. Presently, the country’s laws allow provinces to regulate online casinos. But the national government is yet to create laws that could bring legal iGaming to everyone in the country.

Online Gambling Legalization in the US

For a long time, most Americans felt like legal online gaming would never come to fruition. Then the Department of Justice allowed states to run online casinos in 2011. Four states created online casino laws but most states remained opposed to legalized online gambling.

In 2018, the US Supreme Court created leeway for states to legalize sports betting by striking off the PASPA Act of 1992. Within three years, more than 20 states permit sports gambling of some form: Online or in-person.

Increased legalization of iGaming in the US is a blow to offshore casinos that target American gamblers. But it’s a boon to everyone who’s always wanted to gamble legally. In New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware and West Virginia, you can gamble at both online casinos and sportsbooks.

The Swedish Gambling Act of 2019

Two years ago, Sweden joined the growing list of countries with legal iGaming legislation. Its newest law aims at encouraging offshore casinos to acquire licenses from the Swedish gambling Authority.

By doing so, Sweden can control the iGaming industry and increase its revenues. The law has few implications to gamblers. They can play at their favorite online casinos, like they’ve always done.

However, offshore casinos can no longer advertise on Swedish media unless they’re licensed. Additionally, they need to adhere to standard procedures of fairness and data protection to maintain their business permits.

Monopoly Law in Norway

Before 2017, Norway was like many countries in Europe. It lacked definitive iGaming laws. In 2017, the Nordic nation introduced a controversial law that appointed Norsk Tipping to be the only online gambling company in the country.

Additionally, Norway ordered banks to stop processing payments to offshore casinos. This second effort didn’t succeed in its goal of stopping Norwegians from gambling through overseas websites.

For starters, many online casinos don’t use gambling related terms in their bank account names. As such, banks in Norway can’t tell whether a deposit is headed to a casino site or a shopping website.

On the flip side, there’s no particular law that says a Norwegian citizen can’t bet at a foreign gaming site. This ensures players in Norway can access better quality casino services offshore without facing legal consequences back home.

The Gaming Act of 2018 in Malta

Although Malta has been regulating online casinos for a long time, it introduced a new act to government modern casino sites in 2018. The new act is a consolidation of all gambling-related laws in the country.

Under the new act, Malta has 12 subsidiaries. Basically, the laws are related to what investors need to submit to acquire and maintain a license in Malta. To be clear, Malta has some of the best online gambling laws in Europe.

In fact, it’s the go-to jurisdictions for many investors in the iGaming sector, from software providers to betting companies.

New Laws in Curacao

Before 2015, Curacao was the leading regulator of online gambling. But after years of criticism by governments and players for not holding casinos accountable, Curacao lost its appeal. Instead, new gambling companies began to acquire licenses in Europe.

Curacao is presently changing its laws to make the tougher for applicants. It’s also restructuring its tax policy to attract more casinos. Considering Curacao is a constituent nation of the kingdom of Netherlands, it’s also need to follow the new gaming laws introduced in Holland.

For example, casinos licensed in Curacao will no longer accept players who live in countries where gambling is illegal. This includes customers from the Netherlands. The new laws are new, so only time can tell how they will impact the iGaming industry in Curacao.

Africa

GLI Africa Recognised for 20 Years of Accreditation

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GLI Africa Recognised for 20 Years of Accreditation
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Gaming Laboratories International (GLI®) in Africa has been awarded a certificate of recognition from the South African National Accreditation System (SANAS) for maintaining its continuous accreditation for more than 20 years.

SANAS is recognised by the Accreditation for Conformity Assessment, Calibration and Good Laboratory Practice Act, 2006 (Act No. 19 of 2006) as the sole national accreditation body for providing an internationally recognised and effective accreditation.

GLI Africa is accredited by SANAS for Performance Testing (ISO/IEC 17025) and Inspection (ISO/IEC 17020), and the certificate recognises 20 uninterrupted years of accreditation for Performance Testing.

Devon Dalbock, General Manager of GLI Africa said, “This is a fantastic achievement for GLI Africa and demonstrates the extremely high standards the GLI team in Africa and globally consistently work to. This is also great news for our clients and suppliers looking to certify their products for the South African market. By trusting GLI with their compliance testing requirements, they can be assured of the highest levels of integrity and secure in the knowledge that their products will conform to local technical standards.

“The GLI team in Africa has continued to expand throughout the last 12 months to meet the global demand for GLI services with the introduction of 43 new team members, bringing the total to more than 90. We have also launched the GLI complete suite of Integrated Compliance Solutions, which provides companies of all sizes with the tools they need to comply with their regulatory and technical obligations, all in one place.”

GLI is recognized by accreditation bodies worldwide for accreditations to ISO standards for testing ((ISO/IEC 17025), field inspections ((ISO/IEC 17020), product certification (ISO/IEC 17065) and certification of information systems management systems (ISO/IEC 17021). This global scope of accreditations allows GLI the flexibility to serve our customers 24 days hours a day, seven days a week.

 

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Compliance Updates

UKGC Issues Fines to Two Operators over Social Responsibility Breaches

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The UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) has issued fines to two gaming companies that have breached social responsibility protocols.

Rank Digital Gaming (Alderney) Limited – trading as bellacasino.com, grosvenorcasino.com, meccabingo.com and meccagames.com – will have to pay £700,557 for social responsibility failures.

Annexio (Jersey) Limited – trading as lottogo.com – will have to pay £612,000 for both social responsibility and money laundering failures.

The settlement money will go to the National Strategy to Reduce Gambling Harms.

Helen Venn, Gambling Commission Executive Director, said: “We expect high standards from operators to ensure gambling in Britain is safe and crime free. Those businesses that fail to meet these standards will find themselves facing costly regulatory action.”

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Asia

Macau’s Draft Gaming Bill Outlines Tighter Control of Casinos, Junkets

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Macau’s Legislative Assembly has published the draft of a highly anticipated gaming bill on Tuesday that gave details on the Chinese territory’s goal of tightening its grip on casino firms and reining in so-called junket operators.

The proposed changes, which need legislators’ approval to become law, mark the biggest reform in two decades for the world’s biggest gambling hub in terms of money wagered and lay the ground for multibillion-dollar casino operators ahead of the expiration of their licenses this year.

The 44-page draft document – published in Chinese and Portuguese – comes after the government announced on Friday that the number of new licenses would be capped at six and the license term halved to 10 years.

The licences of the six operators, Wynn Macau, Sands China, MGM China, SJM Holdings, Galaxy Entertainment and Melco Resorts, are all due to expire in June. The government said all existing or potential operators need to apply through a new tender process.

The draft bill aimed to provide clarity on the role of the junket operators, middlemen tasked with bringing in high-rollers from mainland China. If approved, casino operators would no longer have dedicated junket rooms, and revenue-sharing arrangements between the two parties would be prohibited.

Macau will continue to issue junket licenses to approved VIP promoters but will restrict them to only operating in one concessionaire. Previously, Macau junkets were allowed to operate in all operators with multiple rooms. This is likely to further dilute their influence.

While a proposal for a government official to directly supervise the casinos was dropped after feedback from the operators, casinos will be subject to a review every three years when the city’s gaming regulator will examine their “contractual compliance in general”.

Each license holder will have a 30% cap on the number of shares that can be publicly listed while any major financial transactions must be communicated to authorities. The government said it has the right to terminate a casino’s contract for reasons including public interest or breaching its obligations.

Casino operators will have to draw up a plan to promote responsible gambling, while there will be a maximum number of gaming tables and machines each license holder will be allowed to operate, according to the bill.

The draft detailed what would be expected of new licensees, including support for local small- and medium-sized companies, activities of “public interest” and support for fields including science and the environment.

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