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Certificate in remote gaming business offered in Malta

NCFHEA CPD Award Qualification – Professional Certificate in Remote Gaming Business (MQF Level 5) by the National Commission of Higher and Further Education (NCFHE) will be presented to delegates who successfully attend all modules and obtain a minimum pass in a final 4 hour examination (1 hour per module) and in the in-class group case study assignments (1 hour per module).

The entry requirements for this course are 5 O-Levels including a pass in Mathematics and 2 A-Levels OR at minimum of 5 years working experience in Business Administration or within the Gaming Industry. Places for this course are limited to 20 delegates on first come first serve basis. Each module will cover the following topics:

Module 1

  • Understand of the rules of the history of regulation of online gaming in Malta
  • Understand the specifics of Maltese legislation on online gaming
  • Understand remote gaming in the EU Internal Market and current developments, together with exposure to relevant case law
  • Understand measures taken at EU level with regards to consumer protection in the remote gaming industry
  • Understand the basics of copyright law and how this applies to software licence and software development agreements
  • Understand the basics of data protection regulation
  • Be aware of obligations of remote gaming operators under remote gaming, data protection and consumer legislation
  • Able to better comprehend the debates occurring at EU level with regard to the provision of online gaming and a service provider’s position within the EU
  • Understand the rights and obligations emanating under copyright law and awareness of matters that should be covered by software development and license agreements
  • Able to discuss and explain obligations of remote gaming operators under remote gaming, data protection and consumer legislation
  • Able to discuss and explain the debates occurring at EU level with regard to the provision of online gaming and a service provider’s position within the EU
  • Able to discuss and explain rights and obligations emanating under copyright law and awareness of matters that should be covered by software development and license agreements
  • Make judgements which are compliant with the local regulatory framework on remote gaming, data protection, consumer law and copyright law
  • Identify the risks and problems associated with provision of remote gaming to other EU countries
  • Ensure that rights are safeguarded when entering software development or software license agreements
  • Keep abreast with obligations emanating from Maltese law and regulation
  • Keep abreast with developments at EU level
  • Able to identify rights emanating under copyright law and elements which should be contained in a software development and software licence agreement
  • Carry out tasks in compliance with the local regulatory framework on remote gaming, data protection, consumer law and copyright law
  • Carry out tasks related to risk management in view of the EU legal position
  • Identify elements which should be contained in a software development and software licence agreements in the course of business

 

Module 2

  • Define the areas in risk and fraud that are specific to iGaming
  • Apply the knowledge into practice and understand how to mitigate the risk of fraud
  • Prioritise and categorise the different forms of fraudulent activities (according to regularity, most damaging, etc…)
  • Describe the evolving internal controls and risk management techniques aimed at defending the organisation from fraudulent attacks
  • Obtain a very good understanding of mitigations to risks associated to compliance in iGaming environment
  • Describe the main contents and requirements stemming from the relevant legislation and regulations and their importance in the context of fraud & risk mitigation
  • Identify the importance of risk and fraud in the igaming world
  • Analyse the controls that are in place in order to protect organisations, customers and employees
  • Utilise knowledge and risk assessment to increase defences and prevent high-risk case scenarios
  • Implement empathy skills through better active listening skills
  • Incorporate motivational interviewing skills to get better information through questioning
  • Diminish communication blockers in order to enhance information giving
  • Discuss with/Report to the Board and Management the impacts of relevant laws and regulations & risk and their impact on the organisation’s internal control system
  • Identify weaknesses and vulnerabilities in the controls and measures set up for risk appetite and fraud prevention
  • Sustain better operational delivery through better handling skills
  • Analyse through stronger details and investigation skills
  • Keep abreast and where necessary undertake various seminars. Courses and online webinars in relation to new developments in online fraud, as well as new compliance needs and other related areas
  • Conduct continuous research in the field of online fraud so that threats can be immediately anticipated and acted upon proactively
  • Proactively help spot, report and advise on weaknesses and controls in the respective team dedicated to keeping compliant and fighting fraud
  • Create a proactive culture within the whole organisation with respect to risks from fraud, money laundering & related areas

 

Module 3

  • Compare and contrast the different qualitative and quantitative measures of probability;
  • Interpret the evolution of probability over the years and its implications on today’s applications in the gaming industry;
  • examine the use of different risk evaluation techniques;
  • identify sources of risk and types of vulnerability;
  • interpret how probability and uncertainty combine to make for different scenarios and situations found in the gaming industry;
  • identify the different business models that gaming companies adopt to come out as winners irrespectively of the outcome of an event by using the overround and the standardisation of the bookmaker’s profit margin techniques.
  • compare and contrast the different concepts in gaming such as arbitrage and asymmetric information;
  • interpret how different factors are bound to influence betting and the propensity for an individual to accept a bet;
  • examine the use of models by bookmakers and the associated risk of each model;
  • identify the basic categories of fixed and spread bets;
  • compare and contrast the different strategies adopted by bookmakers to bias games in their favour;
  • interpret the difference between an equitable odd and one which is biased;
  • examine the use of different bookmaking strategies;
  • identify the key players involved in gaming;
  • identify and differentiate between total number bets, supremacy and match bets, and performance index bets.

 

Module 4

  • Identify lacking tools and policies in the Responsible Gaming framework
  • Sustain better operational delivery through better handling skills
  • Analyse through stronger details and investigation skills
  • Identify non mitigated risks in relation to the basic requirements of the Responsible Gaming regulations imposed by countries
  • Proactively help spot, report and advise on weaknesses and controls related to the Responsible Gaming framework
  • Create a proactive culture within the whole organisation with respect to Responsible Gaming and duty of care
  • Assist Management in designing an effective responsible gaming strategy and related policy
  • Identify risks in relation to the basic requirements of the Responsible Gaming regulations and recommend internal controls to mitigate them

More information about these courses can be obtained by contacting the following:

LEAD Training Services.
2nd floor, Tower Business Centre, Tower Street, Swatar BKR 4013, Malta

Phone: +356 2546 6088
Email: info@leadtraining.com.mt
Web: www.leadtraining.com.mt

Atlas Healthcare and AXA PPP healthcare launch Personal Case Management and Wellbeing extension

Atlas Healthcare members may now extend their policies to include a new benefit: Personal Case Management and Wellbeing. This extension can be purchased as an ‘add on’ to anyone having a health insurance policy and enhances Atlas Healthcare’s existing products by providing more comprehensive assistance and benefits.

“The extension takes health insurance in Malta to a whole new level and will include Personal Medical Case Management, an international service provided through AXA PPP, where members with serious medical illnesses will be given medical guidance, supervision and support, to help them make informed choices at critical times, especially when the individual is feeling most confused and vulnerable,” said Catherine Calleja, Managing Director of Atlas Healthcare.

“This international service provides far more than a second opinion and provided by a network of independent medical experts and case management team to provide that extra care.”

This new optional benefit also provides cover for the routine visits and tests when a person has been diagnosed with one of the listed chronic medical conditions. These include diabetes, high cholesterol and asthma. Vaccinations for children and adults are also covered. These include the legally required vaccinations usually administered at government health clinics as well as travel inoculations.

Accommodation costs for a parent when a child aged up to 18 is in a private hospital for treatment is also covered. Ms Calleja added that this cover incorporates three complete innovations for the Maltese health insurance market.

Terms and conditions apply. For further information regarding this new extension please contact Atlas Healthcare on 21 322 600 or email health@atlas.com.mt

 

Malta contests ECJ’s definition of illegal betting

Announcement was made recently by parliamentary secretary for competitiveness and economic growth Jose Herrera that Malta would be contesting the ruling of the European Court of Justice over the Council of Europe’s draft convention on sports competitions. The convention stated that illegal bets in sports should be those bets considered illegal by a country’s consumer legislation. Malta feels that this definition of illegal betting “hinders the free movement of services within the EU.”

Parliamentary Secretary Jose Herrera said that Malta agrees with the aims of the convention which were primarily to combat manipulation yet he feels that  “this definition would inevitably influence Malta’s gaming sector, and consequently Malta is seeking the ruling of the ECJ because if ratified, the new definition would hinder the free movement of services” .

The draft convention describes as “any sports betting activity whose type or operator is not allowed under the applicable law of the jurisdiction where the consumer is located.” which the Council of Europe is set on changing. The Council of Europe sources were quoted as stating this definition is  an “inappropriate encroachment into the Maltese betting industry”.

Herrera is concerned that if this draft is ratified it could lead to licensed Maltese operators being limited from extending their operations abroad unless they abide by the laws of the other member states.

If the ECJ declares that the draft convention is not compatible with EU laws – namely the free movement of services and the free market– the Council of Europe would be prohibited from ratifying the convention unless it is amended.

Insisting that Malta’s reservations focus solely on the definition of illegal sports betting – and not the objectives of the council – Herrera argued that due to the fact that Malta’s reservations were not addressed in the Convention, the government will seek the ECJ ruling.

LGA chairman Joseph Cuschieri also stated that the interference in sports betting by this convention is “unacceptable” and he stated that the LGA will not allow anything to interfere with growing Malta’s gaming sector.  “Ever since Malta implemented rules on remote betting, in line with the laws regulating the free market an operator registered in Malta could operate across Europe with one licence, that of the LGA.

Since the financial crisis, countries have been intent on implementing certain licence frameworks to tax these gaming operators. These frameworks are basically saying that even though a gaming company has a licence in Malta, it would need another licence to operate across Europe.”

Dr Herrera advised that Malta also sought legal expert advice on the matter at hand. In May, Malta had moved proposals for the disposition to be amended. It had clearly stated its intentions throughout negotiations and even sent explanations to the European Commission in writing. However, the definition stayed in the same format.

He said the country’s objections were three – that the definition related exclusively to licencing and operator regulation, which was not the aim of the convention, that the definition went against EU treaties and regulations on free movement of services, and that the definition would harmonise industry regulations at a European level when the EU had no such regulations and this could impact on future EU regulations in the sector.

Amaya Gaming confirms finalisation of offering

Amaya Gaming, has announced the completion the underwritten bought-deal private-placement basis of 25 million subscription receipt priced at CAN$20 (€13.77/$18.73) each.

The Canadian gaming provider confirmed that the underwriters of the offering exercised in full the option to purchase an additional 7,000,000 subscription receipts, with the total gross proceeds to Amaya from the offering amounting to CAN$640 million.

The proceeds are currently being held in escrow and will be released without any additional payment upon Amaya’s acquisition of Rational Group, subsidiaries of which are the online poker websites PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker. The proceeds shall also be used for partial funding of the acquisition.

The agreement states that if the subscription receipt is not finalised within six months from the end date of the initial offering, the said receipts shall be cancelled automatically, unless Amaya and the holders of the receipt agree to an extension. Should such a termination occur, the amount subscribed plus its accrued interest shall be reimbursed to the holders of the receipts.

Subject to the terms of the receipt agreement, the subscription receipts are transferable, but these shall not be listed on any exchange.

Amaya is however stating that, should the transaction not be finalised within four months from the closure of the offering, it will put forward its best efforts to find a stock exchange listing for the subscription receipts.

The Canadian gaming provider, Amaya Gaming has a branch of its operations currently running in Msida, Malta.

European Commission raises health hazards awareness

The European Commission is encouraging countries across the continent to demand that online gaming adverts display similar messages as those found on cigarette packs.

Reuters reported yesterday that they have obtained a draft document which states that the European Union executive intends to focus on advertising, in their combat against compulsive gambling.

They also reported that this week the EU executive is expected to present its recommendation to improve controls over Europe’s €10.5 billion ($14.3 billion) e-gaming industry.

Figures presented by the European Commission suggest that online gambling is the fastest growing service activity in Europe, growing at a rate of 15% a year.

Expectations are that it could urge countries to tighten the advertising rules, despite the recommendation not being legally binding.

In countries such as France, a helpline number and health warning messages are currently present on all iGaming websites and in all advertising material. The recommendation is meant to prompt countries into replicating what is already happening.

The process is meant to inform the players of chances of winning and losing, risk of becoming an addict and assistance for compulsive gambling.

The EU also plans to propose a ban on internet gambling firms sponsoring events that are aimed at players under the age of 18.

Responsible Gaming has been duly promoted and and encouraged by the Lotteries and Gaming Authority as well as the licensed operators in Malta. On the 18th February 2014 The Responsible Gaming Foundation was launched by the Authority, as a means of offering support to operators and players alike.

Betsson’s acquisition of NordicBet – an update

Since the official acquisition of NordicBet by igaming giant Betsson in October 2012, NordicBet has been making strategic moves into the spotlight.

Back in December 2013, live dealer specialist Evolution Gaming announced that it had launched a live casino offering for  NordicBet. The agreement came after NordicBet had just confirmed making Evolution Gaming its primary live casino services provider. With NordicBet came its affiliate brands, TrioBet and Maxino, so the offer came as a natural consequence, said NordicBet representative.

The new service for the NordicBet.com website included Evolution’s generic live roulette, blackjack and baccarat tables. NordicBet also gained access to Evolution’s turnkey native speaker dealer tables, inclusive of Svensk Roulette, Deutsches Roulette and Ruletka Live, as well as the exclusive private Norske Roulette services, just to mention a few.

NordicBet’s casino manager, Simon Högberg had commented at that time: “Above all it was the sheer quality, volume and variety of the live tables and associated services available that made Evolution the right choice for us. This now gives us the platform from which to deliver a truly world-class live table gaming experience to players in all of our markets.”

Just a couple of days ago, a deal was struck between NordicBet as to become an official partner of the Champions Hockey League (CHL) European club ice hockey competition.

The deal in place states that the partnership will run for a period of  three years, debuting in the 2014-15 season and ending in the 2016-17 campaign.

Under the agreement, NordicBet will become the CHL’s official sports betting partner. The igaming company will be entitled to  exclusivity in the sports betting category,  and will also present a statistic selection of the CHL on its website.

The NordicBet branding will also be present on perimeter boards during all CHL games and benefit from full integration across official CHL communications and other promotional materials, which will include the CHL streaming platform and website.

The 2014 – 2015 season of Champions Hockey League will commence on the 21st August 2014.

Ulrik Bengtsson, CEO of Betsson Malta, will be speaking at SiGMA, the Malta iGaming Summit.NordicBet

Sarah Aquilina

Sarah Aquilina graduated Doctor of Laws from the University of Malta in 2001, after which she obtained a Master of Laws in Taxation from the University of London. She joined Deloitte Malta’s Tax Department in 2002, and has been a member of the tax advisory team since that time, working on both direct tax and indirect tax advisory projects for local and multinational groups.

Since 2006 Sarah Aquilina has specialised in VAT and currently focuses on VAT advisory and compliance projects for multinational groups, and in particular those operating in regulated businesses such as gaming and financial services. Sarah lectures in VAT on courses organised by the Malta Institute of Taxation and the Malta Institute of Management.

Michael Frendo

One of the legal practitioner pioneers of the regulation of online gaming in Malta, Dr. Michael Frendo was a frequent speaker at international conferences on online gaming in the European Union in early 2000, until in 2004 he was appointed Minister of Foreign Affairs of Malta (2004-2008).

A Senior Lecturer at the University of Malta, holding a doctorate in law from the University of Malta and a postgraduate degree in European Law from the University of Exeter, he currently coordinates the Gaming Law Unit at the Faculty of Laws.

He is also European Adviser to the Maltese regulator, the Lotteries and Gaming Authority. Dr Michael Frendo, who is also a former Speaker (President) of the Parliament of Malta (2010-2013), currently runs SP & Co Consultants Ltd, is a Partner with Scordis, Papapetrou & Co LLC and has a warrant to practice law in both Malta and Cyprus.

Samuel Gauci

Dr. Samuel Gauci graduated with a doctorate of law from the University of Malta in 2005. In 2004, Sam spent a semester at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden on the Erasmus Exchange programme.

Sam’s current role within the Lotteries and Gaming Authority (‘LGA’) is that of Manager, Legal Affairs within the Legal Affairs Department whereby he is involved in the legal matters which are related to licensing and continued compliance of the LGA’s licensees, both land-based and online, enforcement, amendments to legislation and directives, policy development and advising the LGA’s various directorates. Sam has been employed with the LGA since 2010 and has been involved in various LGA and government gaming related projects, including the adjudication of the concession to operate the National Lottery of Malta, and represented the LGA in several gaming conferences. Sam is also a member of the International Association of Gaming Regulators.

Prior to his employment with the LGA, Sam was the Head of the Legal Office within the Government Property Division (‘GPD’) whereby he was involved in the legal matters pertaining to the administration of the Government’s property, he represented the Commissioner of Land in Civil Court litigation and advised the departments of the GPD on legal issues that arose.