New motion tabled in Parliament for the first reading of a new Gaming Bill
The Gaming Bill will endeavour to replace all existing legislation with a singular primary Act of Parliament. Once the Act comes into force a series of technical directives and guidelines currently being consulted on by the Malta Gaming Authority will be published alongside subsidiary legislation.
Announced by the Hon Silvio Schembri, Secretary for Financial Services, Digital Economy and Innovation, the Bill will ensure that the MGA has the necessary resources and powers to effectively regulate the gaming industry whilst protecting consumers. This will be in line with concurrent developments on anti-money laundering and funding of terrorism obligations. The bill will also focus on consumer protection standards and responsible gaming.
The consultation with the MGA was launched in July 2017 and was well recieved, resulting in feedback from 53 different parties both locally and abroad.
‘’This Bill marks a major step in streamlining and encompassing the governance of all gaming services offered in and from Malta and across all channels under the competence of the MGA. The Government wants to ensure that the gaming industry continues to be run responsibly, fairly and free from criminal activity, so that the Maltese jurisdiction provides a safe and well regulated environment where the industry can also develop and innovate.’’ Hon. Silvio Schembri said.
‘’We hope to remove any red tape by increasing efficiency and flexibility for the Regulator, whilst improving the robustness of the current framework and focusing regulation on outcomes. Thanks to this New Gaming Bill the industry will grow by another 4%’’ Hon. Schembri added.
The press conference was also addressed by Joseph Cuschieri, Executive Chairman of the MGA who stated: ”This is an important milestone and welcome this major step forward by the Maltese Government. This Bill contains draft proposals which aim to bridge the regulatory gap between various gaming verticals and channel, including new technologies serving as a platform to future proof gaming regulation whilst ensuring that consumers enjoy a consistent level on protection.”