Antigua, home to 87 interactive gambling license holders, has introduced new regulations and policies for the online gaming industry. The regulations were made possible under new legislation passed June 1, although they're retroactive to May 22, 2001.
"The choice to develop our regulations came from the fact that the Antigua and Barbuda jurisdiction had been going through the evolutionary changes needed to manage an industry such as Internet gaming," explained Marlene Bailey, an industry liaison for the Directorate of Offshore Gaming.
The new regulations address a number of concerns, including changes to prevent money laundering and underage gambling. Provisions for protecting players were created as well.
The Directorate of Offshore Gaming has been separated from the Free Trade and Processing Zone and will now be responsible for enforcing Antigua's gaming laws. In addition, the Directorate has joined with the International Financial Sector Regulatory Authority (IFSRA), which regulates various offshore businesses in Antigua's financial sector.
"Many discussions were held between the government, the gaming industry in Antigua and Barbuda, international agencies and leaders in the gaming industry, both land-based and Internet based," Bailey added. "As a result of these discussions, a framework emerged for the jurisdiction that would address the concerns of our larger world partners, as well as continue in the protection of players and operators, as well as an overall advancement of the industry."
Changes also include revised licensing fees for interactive gaming (virtual casinos), which dropped from US$100,000 to US$75,000 as well as for interactive wagering (sportsbooks), which dropped from $75,000 to $50,000.
Click here to view the complete set of new applications and regulations in zipped format.