Regulatory updates in Latin America
The Finance Commission of Uruguay’s Chamber of Deputies announced a plan to finalize the text of a bill on online gambling by November 30 and is planning to vote on it in December, bringing Uruguay’s attempt to legalize the iGaming sector to the finish line…or maybe not?
The bill, recall, already passed the Finance Commission in the Senate in August, but there is still a chance that the process will be restarted. Critics of the bill point out that only established brick-and-mortar casinos will have the opportunity to run online casinos; another change critics are calling for is the creation of a regulatory body. Congressman Iván Posada has also stated that the controls included in the bill are “weak and insufficient.”
Rewrites would set the legislative timeline back by years.
Sportsbook brands that rely on sponsorships with professional teams will need a different strategy for Chile.
Authorities in Chile have voted to ban online sports betting advertisements and sponsorships, as well as prohibiting commercial partnerships between sportsbooks and Chilean sport teams and federations, with the exception of authorized operators (Polla Chilena public lottery is the only one today) and only 10pm – 6am on TV and 8pm – 6am on radio.
The law will take effect 12 months after publication, though it still has to be approved by the Senate and President Gabriel Boric. However, it’s possible that it will later be superseded by comprehensive gambling regulation — several federal deputies called for the approval of the bill on gambling and betting licensing and tax system introduced earlier this year.
Peru is still in the process of regulating online betting and gambling. The bill was passed in July, became a law in August, and entered into force in October.
In November, the newly appointed regulator, the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Tourism of Peru (MINCETUR), published a draft regulation which is subject to public consultation, with a December 2 deadline for the submission of comments.
The regulation includes a ban on free bets — no free gambling should be provided by operators, including promotional offers and educational demos. Another promotional restriction states that ads shouldn’t be directed at or feature minors.
Another rule is related to gambling suppliers, who have to be registered with the Ministry in order to provide services to licensed operators.
Online gambling and betting operations have to be licensed separately.
Ups and downs of licensing in Europe
While German players will soon have more online gaming opportunities, some Maltese operators lost their licenses; further west, Ireland has finally regulated its gambling market.
The German state of Hesse announced new amendments to the country’s gambling legislation that allow land-based casino operators to apply for an online gambling license. Several establishments have already shown their interest in offering virtual roulette and blackjack.
And sports betting company Entain has already obtained five licenses for its brands in the state of Saxony-Anhalt. The projects are now able to provide online gaming and poker in regulated German states.
M-Hub Gaming, eGaming Lab, and Morpheus Games lost their licenses due to payment failure to the Malta Gaming Authority. The brands still have to pay the fees in question, but their licenses have already been canceled.
However, the number of revoked MGA licenses decreased this year. The regulator tends to limit measures to warnings, and operators still have time to appeal the decision.
Ireland, for the first time in its history, is planning to establish a regulatory and licensing body, the Gambling Regulatory Authority, and create a legislation framework for a new licensing system, tax policy, advertisement rules and other gambling-related topics.
There will be different types of licenses, including B2C gaming, betting and lottery, B2B licenses, and charity licenses. The authority is planning to ban free bets and strictly regulate gambling advertising.
Volatility in India
Expecting great opportunities for the tourism sector and potential gambling tax revenues, the Indian state of Meghalaya issued the Meghalaya Regulation of Gaming Act 2021, legalizing gambling in the state.
However, local authorities’ dreams of Meghalaya as a gaming hub were over before they even started; last month, the act was repealed.
It seems that the gambling regulation couldn’t handle strong religious, political, and civic opposition; besides, Meghalaya has the smallest population in India, which doesn’t present the biggest opportunity among the Indian states for operators.