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Attempt To Legalise Gambling In South Africa
Saturday January 25 ,2014 : NEW ATTEMPT TO LEGALISE ONLINE GAMBLING IN SOUTH AFRICA
Opposition Member of Parliament set to trigger the latest developments in a long-running issue.
For almost a decade now, industry observers have marvelled at South Africa's remarkable procrastination on the legalisation of online gambling despite research studies, overseas fact-finding missions and political debate.
In the latest development, Geordin Hill-Lewis, a member of parliament and shadow minister in the opposition Democratic Alliance party has drafted a bill that seeks to repeal the 2008 National Gambling Act and legalise online gambling beyond the present limited permissions for sports betting.
Online gambling proponents fear that the delays in moving forward on online gambling have left South Africa trailing the trend in European nations toward legalisation and regulation, and more recent initiatives on legalisation in US states like Nevada, New Jersey and Delaware.
The Hill-Lewis bill reportedly proposes that licenses for online gambling operators would be issued at provincial level (the country has ten provinces) and that even currently permitted operators of sports betting sites would be required to reapply.
Taxation would be at the discretion of the individual provinces, but there would be a national body to bring about the harmonisation of standards in order to ensure that provinces all operate on an equal footing.
Tax recommendations have yet to be finalised, with some sources suggesting that a 6 percent tax on gross gaming revenue would be acceptable, split 30 - 70 between the national and provincial governments. Application and registration fees are at this time unknown.
The bill envisages licensing for service companies as well as operators.
Tyrone Dubbin of Sportingbet SA, who has apparently seen the draft, said this week that it was a step forward in enabling operators to answer the demand of South African punters for a full suite of online gambling products beyond sports betting, to include casino games.
Regulation would help operators to provide a safe and secure gambling environment for local online gamblers, he opined.
The bill has a long run ahead in an often fractious political environment where the ruling African National Congress holds a strong majority.
If this measure makes it through the political gauntlet, work will have to start on assembling standards and regulatory requirements, which is likely to take some time and negotiation with provincial governments.
There have been some indications that the ruling party may at last be ready to move forward on legalisation; late last year trade and industry minister Rob Davies, who appears to be the national government's point man on the issue, announced that a national regulator would be set up to oversee all aspects of gambling, including the online variety
Danske Spil Bingo Moves to Microgaming -
The national lottery of Denmark, Danske Spil, is live on the Microgaming Bingo Network. Danske Spil, the Danish national lottery, is live on the Microgaming Bingo Network following a change to its licence conditions.
Quickfire live on Strendus -
Quickfire powered by Microgaming is extending its reach in the LatAm region with the signing of Strendus. Strendus is the online division of Logrand Entertainment Group. The group comprises several companies that operate gaming and entertainment establishments in Mexico, running 14 land-based casinos in total.
Quickfire content live on BetatHome -
Online gaming and sports betting company bet-at-home was founded in 1999. Today the company has 4.8 million registered customers around the world, offering sports betting, casino, live casino, Vegas games, poker and virtual sports.
Microgaming has donated £30,000 between four charities -
Gift of Giving provides Microgamingís customers the opportunity to vote for one of several charities in their region. In lieu of Christmas gifts, £30,000 is split equally between four global regions: Isle of Man, UK and Europe, Africa, and Rest of the World.
Entertainment Betting Odds: 90th Academy Awards -
The Shape of Water leads Sundayís 90th Academy Awards (8 PM ET, ABC) with 13 Oscar nominations, but when it comes to Best Picture, this highly-acclaimed film is a +140 second-favorite behind Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri at Ė115.
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