Casino operators expect Ontario to lift prohibitive law

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Regardless of the stable land-based casino situation in Canada, the fact stands that iGaming dwells in a mostly grey area. Although offshore operators can market their casinos on Canadian territory, they cannot be eligible for the province’s license. In fact, the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario has only one licensee, and that is the gambling website it owns. There have been talks of laxer laws, sure enough: however, where does the issue stand right now? And what would increased liberties in the online sector bring about? Stay tuned to find out everything about the situation.

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Where does online gambling money go?

Short answer: it generally increases the revenue of grey market operators. As the AGCO only licenses a website of its own, punters head over to offshore software. Now, it’s similar to a judicial loophole – and the rigid grip on web casinos has more consequences. iGaming is an industry on the rise, so that it could provide significant funds for the province. Sources estimate that players spend a total of C$500 million on gambling websites – an amount that could round up Ontario’s revenue were the casinos regulated by its Commissioner.

Moreover, there’s a risk in play when users browse offshore sites. While many online casinos operate under a license of practice, some function without any additional regulations. Also, not all gambling commissions provide the same amount of consumer protection.

If you find yourself playing on gray market sites, we suggest that you consult directories available online. For instance, you can go for a read here and discover which real money casinos ensure reliable safety standards. Aside from casino reviews, you’ll find precious information on licensing, payment methods, and even tips to follow as a new player.

Now that we’ve sketched the Ontarian context, there is one more question to answer: what should the Government do?


Attempts at liberalization

The province’s Government is, for the most part, conservative following the 2018 elections. Their conservatism favors the expansion of the private sector. The party, led by Doug Ford, has made attempts at creating a more lenient legal frame for online gambling. The members wish to include this proposal in 2019’s budget, and it effectively became part of the budget planned for 2020. November 2020 marked the beginning of open discussions regarding the regulation of the iGaming market.

The politicians act primarily out of economic reasons, as Canadian gambling met a nosedive the last year. As we have already mentioned, tax revenue from online gambling might reach hundreds of millions. Furthermore, representatives of opposing parties align their views with those of the conservative majority, making change all the more likely.

Recent newscasts show that there might soon come a governmental liberalization of the sector. The sole remaining concern is social, as officials fear the large society’s backlash and the moral implications of lenience towards e-gambling. However, studies show that most Ontarian citizens have gambled at some point, and their attitude shifts towards neutral when it comes to games of chance.


A few conclusions

Canada in general and Ontario, in particular, make strides towards a more effective gambling environment. Licensing casinos that right now find themselves in the gray area will help the local economy and ensure that all clients play safely. Only time can tell if the changes will genuinely occur, but the inclusion of this issue in 2020’s Ontarian budget indeed represents a step in that direction.


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