Gambling regulation in Andorra and its bright future

Andorra is been a yellow-level online gambling jurisdiction with partial regulation for a long time, though their future looks bright with the new rules of bingo (lotto) gambling approved (adopting the 15 relevant amendments presented by the Social-democratic parliamentary group to the Gambling Law).

Bitcoin Casino AndorraBitcoin Casino Andorra

In regards of land-based gambling activities, the most remarkable features are the prohibition of smoking in the casino and bingo gaming spaces, includes a single casino throughout the territory, the abolition of the Gambling Council and the elimination of tax credits for the number of overnight stays. See below in more details some of the most important rules related to the new regulation:

  • The elimination of the possibility of smoking in the casino and bingo gaming spaces, since that nowadays Andorran legislation does not permit smoking in any public premises except smoking rooms. So this change, it is imperative matter, otherwise it would create comparative disadvantage with other leisure activities.
  • The Andorra Regulatory Board for Gambling is abolished, as it presents an administrative authority with a huge structure and cost, and a Game Department attached to the Ministry of Economy and Finance is created instead, which will assume the same functions.
  • The catalogue of games is really wide, covering sport and horse-racing betting, casino games, poker, bingo as well as raffles and the distribution of foreign lottery (namely, Spanish lotteries).
  • Allow to obtain a license to conduct a lottery.
  • The concessionaire company will lose the prize that the Riberaygua text predicted according to the number of overnight stays. The justification is that it is very difficult to apply this prerogative in practice, which gave a tax rebate to bingos and casinos to attract tourists, consisting of a reduction of 5% of the tax rate for every 150,000 additional overnight stays.
  • Flexibility in relation to the operator of the distribution percentage of the winning prize, allowing to maintain at least 70% of revenues.
  • Special control of money laundering and creation of new administrative requirements. Controls have been further strengthened and many of the amendments have been adopted with consensus. The infractions can not be sanctioned without the previous instruction of the corresponding administrative procedure by the ministry in charge of the finances. Besides that, the Section 68 of the bill prohibits minors, even emancipated minors from accessing gambling salons, or at places authorized for their practice.

The new regulation approved is looking for those juicy revenues that the casino would origin and this would make pay less taxes to the citizens of Andorra, impacting on the positive way in the development of its infrastructures and completing the tourist offer of a country that until very little lived on the Winter sports and foreign purchases.

Online gambling and online gambling licenses, is still in a transitional state, though the legalization and regulation of online casino gambling is planned to take place this year. It has been proposed to resort to new legislation that encourages online poker companies to settle in the Principality, seeking also new ways to encourage foreign people visits and besides that, authorities are keen to approve a licensing system that would permit both local and global operations. At this time, it’s unclear what the exact level of player protections will be on an international level, but it seems like they want to work as much protection as possible into the implementation of the regulatory legislation.

Everything leads to think that the current reform of Law Gambling has been among other things to regulate the online game. Due to the small size of Andorra and in relation to online gambling licenses, they won’t probably be able to support a very high number of licensees.

Along these lines, they only want to accept the best of the best to maintain a high level of integrity for their market, being also needed the collaboration of Spain and France to make a joint legislation that will not disturb any of these large neighbors.

The fact that this new’ game regulation could result on the unification of the laws of two countries makes it the first of these characteristics since this market began to regulate in our continent.

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