Malta Gaming Authority
The Malta Gaming Authority was initially formed to regulate and control land based casinos in Malta. Around the time of the millennium a surge in the formation of online casino operators led to many being registered in Malta to benefit from low taxation.
Malta is part of the European Union so any online casino registered in Malta can operate legally within any of the 28 member states. That is subject complying with any gambling legislation within the EU member state. Many of the EU member states will no longer allow a foreign online casino to offer their services within the state unless they have a local registered company and gambling licence.
Although this Maltese Autority licenses and regulates many online casinos it became a legal requirement in 2014 that any online casino registering UK players must also regulated and licensed by the UK Gambling Commission. This has also affected online casinos operating from other non UK bases like Gibraltar and the Isle of Man.
The UK legislation of 2014 caused another tier of licensing requirements for many online casinos. For most of them, they continue to operate their gambling operations from Malta to benefit from favourable tax rates. The additional administration costs for holding multiple gaming licenses will be an additional expense for the online casinos which operate from Malta.
Having said that the Malta Gaming Authority has awarded and administers around 500 online gaming licenses.
Malta Licensing Requirements
Companies applying for a gambling license in Malta can choose from four licences.
The first is for gambling companies which use a random number generator to determine the outcome of a wager. The second is exclusively for sports betting companies. The outcome of a sports bet is totally random. The third licence option is for gambling advertising activities. The fourth option is for companies that operate remote gambling activities.
Licensing requirements are very stringent and cover everything including computers, software, payments, games, payout rates and dispute resolution.
The Malta Gaming Authority mission statement reads as follows; “To regulate competently the various sectors of the gaming industry that fall under the Authority by ensuring gaming is fair and transparent to the players, preventing crime, corruption and money laundering and by protecting minor and vulnerable players.”