Malta Online Gambling Law 2020
According to EY’s research, the gambling industry has a significant impact on Maltese economic growth. All gambling types are legalized in the country while the legislation can boast clear provisions. How does Malta regulate gambling businesses?
Gambling accounts for approximately 12% of gross domestic product (GDP), providing 9000 people with job opportunities. The state was the first EU member to specify the procedure of online gambling activities. A local regulator, MGA, reports that the budget obtains about €80 million annually due to the gambling sector.
Malta is considered one of the most popular jurisdictions for online gambling because of strictly defined licensing rules. This country is whitelisted by the United Kingdom Gambling Commission. Such a license gives a certain status and the possibility to promote services among UK citizens.
Malta Online Gambling Law
Malta is the first EU state to adopt the online gambling law. A part of legal acts was issued in 2001, and the Regulation on remote games became effective in 2004. Gambling licenses are currently granted by the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA), formerly LGA – Lotteries & Gaming Authority.
One of the core advantages of local legislation is the unlimited number of gambling permits. Its licensing rules are much simpler than in other popular jurisdictions. Besides, Malta features reasonable tax rates and commercially viable license fees.
All licenses are divided into four types designed for different kinds of gambling businesses:
- Class 1 (Online gaming licence) permits online casinos with slot machines and table games;
- Class 2 (Remote betting licence) is aimed at operators engaged in fixed odds online betting;
- Class 3 (Licence to promote and abet gaming) is meant for companies receiving a percent of winnings in poker rooms, bingo games and other player-to-player interactions;
- Class 4 (Licence to host and manage online gaming operators excluding licensee) is given to gambling software manufacturers and providers.
One operator can obtain several types of licenses depending on the amount of services provided. At the same time, gaming business owners should carry out financial accounting, ensure customer data protection and comply with the responsible gambling policy.
How to get a Maltese gambling license
Online gambling license acquisition requires time and investments regardless of jurisdiction. However, the Maltese license justifies the expenditures and related challenges.
- MGA has an excellent reputation.
- The approval document issuing system is legally verified.
- The high status of documents, enjoying player confidence.
- The lowest tax rates in Europe.
- Legal protection of operators and clients.
- The stable economic and political system.
The Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) meets the needs of applicants and assists them in licensing. A list of the necessary documents is accurately stipulated at the preliminary stage of application. Candidates have to:
- be registered as LLC in Malta – a limited liability company format;
- accumulate an authorized capital amounting to the corresponding license type;
- show the technical means for the online gambling activity;
- provide the essential documents in English.
One of the fundamental requirements is the Maltese legal address. At least two persons should be the shareholders of a company. Newcomers obtain a temporary half-year permit and then undergo a range of crucial inspections to get a permanent license for five years.
Maltese licensing features
Applications for online gambling licenses can be submitted by a company registered within the county and a gambling operator from the other jurisdiction that conducts financial transactions via the Malta-based subsidiary.
Receiving a gambling permit, one should pass a range of obligatory inspections for statutory compliance. The audit is made by independent experts selected by MGA.
All entities holding a gambling share are thoroughly checked by the Maltese regulatory body. Gaming license applicants should provide MGA with a detailed business development plan for the coming year. A tax rate for registering any license type is €2300.
The current Maltese legislation opens great opportunities for online gambling operations, but MGA reserves the right to control providers severely. Licensees have to ensure customer data integrity and website availability, complete regular audits, guarantee prompt pay-offs and pay taxes.
You will be able to discover more about European gambling organization rules and Ukrainian online gaming legislation aspects at Ukrainian Gaming Week 2020 on June 16-17.