South America gambling field has enormous potential for the development of online gaming activities since approximately three-quarters of the continent’s population have access to gaming offers.
The first Latin American country to introduce a local regime of licensing became Colombia. It happened three years ago, in September 2016. Columbia is still the only state in the region where online gambling activities are completely regulated. In June 2017, Coljuegos, the country’s authority responsible for the gambling field, granted its first online gaming license.
After the introduction of its legislative framework, the regulatory body’s efforts have been highly appreciated by many people and entities for attracting considerable funds to the national healthcare system, as well as a number of other social services.
In the first years of its operation, the Colombian online gambling market generated substantial revenue.
The country’s gambling regulator also managed to shut down approximately three thousand unauthorized gaming establishments thanks to its collaboration with federal police. Besides, the Columbian authority succeeded in calling for the introduction of more severe penalties and longer prison sentences for those who violate the law.
Most casinos are located in Bogotá, the largest city of the country. Regular establishments in the county offer diverse gaming options: pari-mutuel, baccarat, slot machines, poker, roulette and other games. Overall, there are twenty-one authorized casinos and a lot of illegal gaming establishments.
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Another market with significant potential, which merits attention, is Argentina. The state has recently initiated the process of legalizing a gambling market since Buenos Aires became Argentina’s first province to pass a decree regarding the legitimization of online gambling and sports betting at the end of the last year. The above-mentioned decree requires establishments desiring to be engaged in the area to apply for a permit and comply with twenty specific requirements in order to successfully receive it.
Taking into account the fact that the Argentinian potential online gambling market is composed of individual provinces, it is hoped that an increasing number of provinces will establish their own legislative gambling frameworks. Given the achieved progress, there is a widespread view that Argentina is likely to turn into one of the most successful markets in South America during the next two years.
Argentina’s positive vision for both online and land-based gambling activities, as well as its assumption that making gaming a legal activity is the best way to combat violations and protect the country’s citizens, are extremely important in the successful development of this field.
As for other Latin America’s countries, the one that should also be mentioned is Brazil. This country’s market is developing slowly but it also has great prospects. In spite of the fact that Brazil is likely to become one of the world’s biggest markets, local authorities have not introduced a legal gambling framework yet.
However, a public consultation regarding sports betting was launched this year. It happened after the sports betting law had been signed in 2018. According to general opinion, this can evidence that the Brazilian authorities intent to create a comprehensive regulated online gambling industry.
It is said that the country's strict position reflects the post-war government’s opinion that there is a connection between gambling activities and money laundering, organized crime, prostitution.
The modern authorities’ views have certainly changed in recent years but the Government’s restrictions have not been lifted yet.
However, a large number of foreign operators are entering the country’s market, which confirms that the gambling industry is becoming more and more prosperous in the country.
To conclude, the gambling market in South America has great potential and is capable of generating multibillion-dollar revenues. States should develop new laws that will control modern gambling.
As mentioned earlier, Panama’s authorities are intending to draw on more foreign customers by canceling a 5.55% tax on gambling activities.
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