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Quebec Initiates Online Gambling With Study

by Leroy Baker, Tax-News.com, New York

20 July 2010


Quebec has announced that it will be opening its own state-run online gaming and poker site in September 2010. Quebec minister of finance Raymond Bachand also announced that he is moving ahead with an online games monitoring committee.

“We have authorized Loto-Québec to develop online games but we are going to ensure that everything is done to maintain as a priority the fight against gambling addiction,” Minister Bachand emphasized.

The committee will analyze the social impact of the development in Québec of online games, will propose prevention strategies against pathological gambling and will analyze the regulatory, technical, economic and legal measures that can counteract illegal gambling.

The committee will observe Loto-Québec’s implementation of online games and submit a report no later than three years after the introduction of online games.

Bachand said they had given Loto-Québec the green light and amended the regulations to allow it to offer stable return rates, honest games, controlled, limited access to adult persons, and measures to control the time and the amounts played, contrary to the situation that now prevails on certain illegal sites.

In 2009-2010, Loto-Québec paid the government CAD1,25bn (USD1.2bn) in dividends. “Some of this money is used to fund essential services such as health and education, rather than benefiting organized crime, as was previously the case,” Bachand said. Bachand has forecast that the online operations will generate CAD50m in dividends over three years of activity.

Online gaming is already well established in Quebec through the Kahnawake Gaming Commission (KGC), located outside of Montreal, which is a key player in the online gaming industry, licensing and managing many popular sites in the world. Because the KGC is a private company under the Mohawk Nation’s control, however, Quebec does not benefit from specific gambling revenues from this source.

Ontario is now considering its own provincial online gaming and poker outlets. New director for Ontario Lottery and Gaming, Paul Godfrey, estimates that Ontario’s citizens generate approximately CAD1.9bn per year of gross income from online gaming sites. “Money is going out of this province to other provinces as well as offshore sites,” Godfrey stated.

A comprehensive report in our Intelligence Report series examining the new possibilities that offshore e-commerce open up for business, and analysing the offshore jurisdictions that have led the way in offering professional e-commerce regimes for international business, with a particular focus on e-gaming, is available in the Lowtax Library at http://www.lowtaxlibrary.com/asp/subs_reports.asp and a description of the report can be seen at http://www.lowtaxlibrary.com/asp/description_report6.asp
TAGS: commerce | law | internet | e-commerce | gambling | licensing | Canada | regulation

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