3 ways that Malta could become even more casino friendly

Published on July 27, 2017 in Industry News

Malta Gaming AuthorityIf you’ve never visited the island-country of Malta, you’re missing out on a culture of sunshine, relaxation, and of course, casinos.

As one of the most “casino-friendly” countries in the world, the Malta Gaming Authority has created something of a paradise for casino operators.

Widely accepting of both land-based and online casinos, Malta is the perfect host for these businesses thanks to the low tax rate and the inclusion of being a part of the EU. Operating under the MGA means being able to reach customers across the EU and that makes this small (but powerful) nation even more appealing. 

With all of this already working in their favour, Malta is looking to become even more casino friendly in the following ways.

1. New Gaming Act

A recent white paper revealed that the MGA has called for Malta to replace its current laws for one that could be more comprehensive. The current law calls for each operator to have a separate license for different aspects of the same business. In fact, there are some casinos with as many as 13 licenses for authorization to run each section of one casino.

The MGA has suggested the law be changed to only two licenses: One for business-to-consumer companies and one for business-to-business companies. These changes would not only lower the vast number of licenses needed, but it would also make the process of applying for a license much more appealing to outside companies.

Lastly, the new Gambling Act would also see B2B companies exempt from paying taxes.

2. Stricter enforcing of rules

While many of the larger companies found in Malta are well known, such as Rational Group (home to PokerStars, NetEnt, and others), there are also smaller companies with unknown pasts.

It’s these companies which have been singled out as being a problem in the industry. The MGA was recently accused of not doing all that they could to monitor licensees and in order for the industry to move forward, this would need to change.

3. Welcome to Bitcoin

Last, but not least, a recent interview with executive chairman of MGA, Joseph Cuschieri revealed that plans to legally allow use of Bitcoin in casinos is moving forward.

Bitcoin, as well as other cryptocurrencies, are quickly growing to become more than just a fanciful idea. With real market value and a growing base of users, MGA is moving to make these currencies completely legal to use at their online casinos.

"We believe that cryptocurrencies and blockchain technologies are emerging innovations which need analysis and an assessment of the risks and opportunities for potential adoption in the gaming sector," said Cuschieri.

"The shape and form of the framework governing cryptocurrencies will be announced in due course and once the risk assessment is carried out. Once the results of the study are evaluated, the MGA will make its position official on how cryptocurrencies will be adopted."

While many of these works are still in their infant phase, it’s going to be an interesting future for the most casino-friendly country in the world.