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Malta launches wider Licensing Regulations for Remote/Online Gaming

In the last few months, intensive consultations on new Gaming Laws in Malta have taken place. In mid-2003 the Malta Lotteries & Gaming Authority announced that a new licensing regime for online gaming was in the pipe-line and that it was very likely that these new regulations would be issued by the end of February 2004.

These Remote Gaming Regulations have now been published and will enter into force by the end of March 2004. Through these regulations other Gaming Activities will be permitted, such as online casinos, casino-style games, betting exchanges and lotteries. These new regulations will ensure that not only those who are highly interested in the commercial advantages offered by Malta, are satisfied, but even those who are concerned that there could be a proliferation of under-regulated Maltase licensed sites. These new laws will create a system of checks and balances which will uphold an advantageous and competitive regime on one hand and regulation and seriousness on the other.

Highlights of the New Proposed Legislation

Raison d'Etre behind the Regulations

The proper operation on interactive games
The protection of players
The prevention of money laundering
Exigencies of public interest  

Mechanics

The appointment by the Licensee of one key official to personally supervise the operations
Appointed key individual person must be a director of the company and is to report to the Authority   
The Online Gaming System to be tested by an approved laboratory at least within six months prior to the application
Player Protection (to come into force within 1 year from the date of these regulations
Granting of License - valid for 5 years on a non-refundable basis

Player Protection

Players funds to be kept separate from Licensee’s own funds
Licensee shall instruct and authorize the credit financial institution by which a players’ account is held to disclose any information as may be requested by the Authority
Funds in the player’s account, including funds in transit or in the process of being cleared through the banking system must be at all times at least equal to the aggregate of the amount standing to the credit of players’ account held by the licensee

Four classes of licenses

Class 1 – Online Gaming License;
Class 2 – Online betting office license or an online betting exchange office license;
Class 3 – License to promote and abet gaming from Malta;
Class 4 License to host and manage online gaming operators, excluding the licensee himself.

Taxation on all Three Classes

Online Gaming License - a sum of LM 2000/month in the first six months after the issue of the license & Lm3,000 per month for the entire duration of the of the license period.

Online gaming operated by a Class 4 Remote Gaming licensee, licensee who operates the hosting platform shall not pay any tax for the first six months after the issue of the license, then he pays one thousand Maltase Liri (Lm1,000) per month for the subsequent six months and subsequently two thousand Maltase Liri (Lm2,000) per month for the entire duration of the license.

Licensees operating from the hosting platform  - a sum of Lm500/month.

Online Betting Operations - a sum equivalent to 0.5% on gross amounts of bets.

Online Betting Exchanges - a sum equivalent to 0.5% on the sum of all net winnings calculated per player

Pool betting – a sum equivalent to half of one per centum (0.5%) on the aggregate of stakes paid.

Provided that in all cases the total maximum of tax payable per annum by one licensee in
respect of any one license shall not exceed Lm200,000
.

See also:

News Archive: Articles on Betting and Gaming Regulations in Malta - 2000-2004

Library: Malta International Trading Companies

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