LONDON –- (PRESS RELEASE) -- The Lotteries and Gaming Authority of
Malta (LGA) and independent standards organisation eCommerce and Online
Gaming Regulation and Assurance (eCOGRA) have agreed to closer cooperation
in pursuit of player protection measures.
Subject to certain conditions, the LGA has agreed that operators using
software supplied by eCOGRA members, and that is subject to eCOGRA's
principles and testing methodologies, will not be required to submit to
further review and monitoring processes required for the award of a Malta
online gaming licence. The LGA will continue to use its own methodologies
in conducting due diligence investigations on all applicants to decide on
their suitability as licensees and to review other appropriate areas
addressing player protection and responsible operator conduct.
The discussions follow investigations by the LGA in a search for
optimum testing and operational systems. Malta is a full member of the
The agreement will potentially apply to a wide range of online casinos
and poker rooms, comprising a significant proportion of the available
business. Malta numbers 71 online gambling sites as licensees, and there
are 76 major Internet venues carrying the eCOGRA "Play It Safe" seal.
There will also be more cooperation between the two bodies on player
disputes to ensure that these are heard fairly, independently and within a
reasonable timeframe. The LGA has its own compliance and disputes officer
and eCOGRA offers a dedicated dispute mediation service through its Fair
Further discussions will now detail the finer points of cooperation and
consistency between the requirements of the two bodies, based on an
acceptance of common principles of honesty and efficiency in the interests
of player protection.
Mario Galeo, the chief executive responsible for Malta licensing says
that he is pleased with the agreement reached with eCOGRA and looks forward
to close cooperation and communication in the interest of creating better
conditions in the online gambling industry.
"We share a common purpose in seeking to ensure that the player is
given fair gaming and efficient, courteous service by casinos and poker
rooms that are licensed and regulated by our respective bodies," he said.
"We look forward to a closer working relationship that benefits both the
players and the industry in the years ahead."
The CEO of eCOGRA, Andrew Beveridge said he was delighted that the LGA
had approved the testing procedures and operating standards that his
organisation had introduced for the "Play It Safe" seal operations.
"eCOGRA is keen to interact with any jurisdiction that shares our
values and we regard this closer relationship with the LGA as a significant
step toward consistent global regulation for safe online gambling," he
The agreement follows a similar collaborative arrangement with the
Kahnawake licensing jurisdiction in Canada, which was signed late last year
by the directors of the Kahnawake Gaming Commission and eCOGRA.
eCOGRA has announced that the growing interaction between major
regulatory and standards authorities is broadly aimed at achieving wider
consistency across geographical borders in regard to requirements and
standards concerning online casino and poker room relations with the player