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Kenya destroys 192 illegal gaming machines

Niji Ng

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Kenya destroys 192 illegal gaming machines
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The police authorities in eastern Kenya have burned 192 illegal machines, allegedly imported from China. The police has been on the consistent look-out to nab any illegal gaming activities throughout the country.

Gambling at casinos and other government-sanctioned gaming facilities is legal in Kenya. However, such gambling facilities are not available in villages, where people tend to resort to illegal gambling operators.

Kenya is a unique country in Africa. More than 60 per cent of its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) comes from tourism.

The biggest draws for tourism in the country are the wildlife preserves that contain lions, elephants, giraffes, zebras, and wildebeests. In addition, the country also has ecotourism, which is drawing many tourists under the age of 40 who are interested in seeing natural landmarks but still want to minimise their carbon footprints. It is estimated that tourists spend an average of $257 million each year in Kenya, so it represents an overwhelming amount for the economy.

Gambling has been legal in some areas of Kenya since the 1960s when the country gained independence from the United Kingdom. The country currently licenses or operates 28 casinos, 11 bingo parlours, a horse racing track, and three sportsbooks. In addition, lotteries, bingo, and poker are also permitted in designated areas. All the casinos and other gambling establishments are in large cities, such as Mombasa and Nairobi.

But, people in smaller cities and even smaller townships do not have casinos in the area. In addition, the government has still not worked to fully regulate online gaming, although there is an increasing number of Kenyans who are choosing to gamble online rather than visiting a casino. For these individuals, illegal machines may be their only form of gaming entertainment.

Machines from China

China does not permit legal gambling on the mainland, but it does permit gambling in Macau and Hong Kong. These two areas are governed by different rules than the rest of China.

China has been cracking down on its illegal gaming institutions for many years, burning and destroying gaming machines wherever they are found. However, the country has many companies that produce gaming machines for casinos throughout Asia despite the fact the Chinese people themselves are not able to gamble. Chinese companies ship gaming machines all over Asia and the rest of the world, without asking where they are going, to make a profit they can’t make in their own country.

The gaming machines confiscated by the Kenyan government were not manufactured in China and shipped to Kenya, but, in fact, were manufactured in Kenya. A Chinese factory in Itabua, which was supposed to be manufacturing other equipment, was instead found to be manufacturing gaming machines. The machines found during the last raid and burned were said to have a street value of about $13 million. Several Chinese nationals who were running the machine production were arrested.

In addition to finding the gaming machines at the factory and burning them, the Kenyan government has also been finding them in shops and other locations, sometimes burning the machines with money still inside, and arresting the shop owners.

The Kenyan government has said the reason it wants to burn all the machines is because children are using the machines to gamble and are losing their parents’ money when they should be in school. However, some sources are pointing to the Kenyan government not wanting to lose out on revenue taken in by legitimate gaming establishments in the country.

 

Source: usaonlinecasino.com

Niji has been in the writing industry for well over a decade or so. He prides himself as one of the few survivors left in the world who have actually mastered the impossible art of copy editing. Niji graduated in Physics and obtained his Master’s degree in Communication and Journalism. He has always interested in sports writing and travel writing. He has written for numerous websites and his in-depth analytical articles top sports magazines like Cricket Today and Sports Today. Besides reporting industry headlines from all around the globe, Niji is also head of the content management team at Impressions Content Management, based in Kerala, India, which offers writing and editing services to clients around the world.

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Africa

Kenya may reduce gambling taxes

Niji Ng

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Kenya may reduce gambling taxes
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Kenya’s inconsistent gambling policy could take another U-turn if the new tax proposal is approved. Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta reportedly declined to sign the new Finance Bill, 2018, which proposes a new gambling tax regime of 35 per cent. The president returned the bill to the parliament to revise the proposals. The president, reportedly, wants a gambling tax rate of 15 per cent.

For starters, here is a summary of Kenya’s summersaults in gambling tax rate. President Kenyatta himself signed legislation in June 2017 that boosted gambling taxes from as low as 5 per cent (for lotteries) and 7.5 per cent (for betting operators) to a new uniform 35 per cent rate for all gambling products. The new rate officially kicked in on January 1.

Since Kenyatta signed on the bottom line, gaming companies have fiercely lobbied legislators to reduce their tax rate to something they believe does not make their Kenyan operations unworkable. Two such reprieve efforts have already gone down to defeat, including an amendment to the Finance Bill that was rejected earlier this month.

Kenya’s Treasury Secretary had originally sought a truly nutty 50 per cent gambling tax and the 35 per cent rate was a compromise measure proposed by Kenyatta himself. Kenyatta previously resisted efforts to keep taxes at their earlier rates due to his stated desire to curb Kenyan youth’s gambling participation. It is unclear what might have prompted Kenyatta’s current about-face on this issue.

Business Daily quoted a National Assembly legislator familiar with the contents of Kenyatta’s memo saying there was little appetite in parliament for reopening the gambling tax debate due to the “social impact” of gambling. “This is where we are going to differ with the president.”

The anonymous parliamentarian failed to mention the impact that the tax hike has had on local sports bodies, as large betting operators such as SportPesa cited the tax hike as justification for scrapping its existing sports sponsorships, then renewing some of these deals at reduced rates.

Compounding matters, local sports bodies are complaining that the government has yet to release the portion of the Sh8b (US$79.3m) in new gambling taxes collected that are supposed to help fund their operations. The Standard quoted Sports Cabinet Secretary Rashid Echesa saying that the treasury is waiting for parliament to approve the release of the funds.

 

Source: CalvinAyre

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Africa

South Africa makes progress in gambling legislation

Niji Ng

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South Africa makes progress in gambling legislation
Houses of Parliament entrance, Cape Town, South Africa
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Gambling legislation has been a hotly debated topic in South Africa, especially the newly proposed National Gambling Amendment Bill. The latest news is that the legislators are closer to reach an agreement over the proposals of the bill. Garron Whitesman, a Cape Town-based gaming lawyer sounds optimistic.

“Whilst it is still very early days in the process, it appears that a positive watershed moment may have been reached in policy as the position overtly adopted by the members of the Portfolio Committee was materially different to that adopted a number of years ago when the issue was previously considered,” Whitesman told news to industry media outlet and added: “A much more realistic and sensible view seems to be being adopted by the parliamentarians ultimately responsible for the setting of gambling policy in South Africa.”

It would be useful to remind the readers that the legislators from both the ruling African National Congress (ANC) and the opposition Democratic Alliance members were critical of the content of the bill.

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Africa

Helio Gaming strikes Hammer Lottery deal

George Miller

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Helio Gaming strikes Hammer Lottery deal
Richard Mifsud, Helio Gaming CEO (centre) shakes hands on the deal with Olumuyiwa Awosile, MD at Hammer Lottery (right) in Lagos, Nigeria
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First game to go live later this month

 

Games from innovative lottery supplier Helio Gaming are to go live in Nigeria for the first time after the supplier agreed a deal with Hammer Lottery.

Hammer Lottery operates a number of popular lottery products and will add Helio’s suite of tailored jackpot games in order to give players further chances to win big from small stakes.

An operator-branded 6 of 25 game, costing 100 Naira a ticket and drawn twice a week, will be launched in September, with further games boasting localised features to follow in the coming months.

Requiring no skill or pre-existing knowledge, these games boost acquisition and retention and enhance an operator’s ability to cross-sell to both casino and sportsbook players by offering high-frequency, life-changing prizes.

The new agreement comes a few weeks after Helio struck their first deal on the continent with popular Kenyan operator Lotto Joto.

Richard Mifsud, CEO at Helio Gaming, who is planning a local CSR initiative as part of the launch, said: “I’m delighted to announce our cooperation with Hammer Lottery and I am very confident their customers will enjoy playing our games.

“We have ambitious plans in Africa, which has a number of markets which are tailor-made for our new breed of lottery products, and it is great that Hammer lottery are leading the charge in Nigeria.”

Olumuyiwa Awosile, Managing Director at Hammer Lottery, said: “We are very pleased to have reached an agreement with Richard and the team at Helio and are excited about the opportunities the deal presents.

Malta-based Helio Gaming now offer a number of customisable lottery games including daily, weekly, and event-based draws, which can be branded by individual operators to appeal to a large number of customer demographics.

With unlimited jackpots, the draws can use the supplier’s certified RNG or live broadcast using existing casino studios, and even include non-monetary prizes such as cars, yachts, and luxury holidays.

 

About Helio Gaming:

Helio Gaming, a fully scalable lottery engine system that offers multiple API functionality with which to integrate existing gaming platforms, customer relationship management, campaign management, affiliate management, and other marketing automation tools.  Its portfolio includes custom-made lottery games to fulfil any operator’s lottery needs, including its flagship brand Lotto Hero. Such games can vary from operator-branded RNG lottery games, where the operator can tailor the game to their needs, lottery games based on the outcome of international lotteries, and much more. Helio Gaming’s products offer its partners a new vertical through which to grow and strengthen their player base and drive cross-sell between their other game verticals.  These products give them the edge in what is a fiercely competitive sector and can be integrated easily and seamlessly into any platform.

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