Malta Temporarily Derails Cyprus Bid To Regulate Online Gambling

EU three-month standstill period extended following Malta critique

The Cyprus government’s initiative to legalise, licence and regulate online gambling has effectively been derailed – albeit temporarily – by an adverse opinion from EU member Malta.

The three month mandatory standstill period during which other EU members were invited to study and comment on the Cyprus draft law was set to expire this week, but has been extended to year’s end following Malta’s comments.

Cyprus submitted its draft towards the end of June this year, advising that it planned to levy a 10 percent tax on GGR for online sports betting operators servicing Cyprus punters, with a further 1 percent of net revenue to be paid towards responsible gambling infrastructure and measures, and an additional 2 percent which would be dedicated to sports development on the Mediterranean island.

Applications have been invited from sports betting companies, and eight international firms have already been granted “transitional” licensing, including bet365 and Sportingbet.

Under the proposed Cyprus online gambling legislative changes, online casino and betting exchange action remains prohibited, with tough punitive measures against players and operators provided for transgressors.

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Brian Cullingworth

Brian Cullingworth

Infopowa news was a staple of Casinomeister’s news from 2000 until 2019. Brian Cullingworth was the main writer, contributor, and was one of the most knowledgeable persons I have ever known involved in the online casino industry.

We first met in January 2001 at the ICE in London where I observed him going booth to booth interviewing online casino, software, and licensing jurisdiction representatives. Brian was also heavily involved with our forum as “Jetset“, he was involved as an informal consultant to eCOGRA, the OPA, and was a player advocate who assisted countless aggrieved players with his connections to industry folks. He also published “Casino Cautions” via Infopowa news for quite a number of years. These can be found in our news archives.

His passing in February 2019 was a dark day for us. He will be forever missed.

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