Thu | Sep 21, 2017

Umbrella gaming regulator proposed

Published:Sunday | September 25, 2016 | 9:00 AMTameka Gordon

A new gaming regulatory body, whose remit will include help for gambling addicts, is under consideration.

Speaking at the 2016 Gaming Industry Summit in Kingston last Thursday, Minister of Finance Audley Shaw proposed a full review of the role and functions of the various regulatory bodies with a view to forming an overarching entity for gaming regulation locally.

"This body would be the main advisory body to the Government on gaming and would be given the resources and powers to regulate the industry," Shaw said.

The new regulator will also issue operating licences, develop codes and practices, and monitor compliance.

A 'responsible gaming commission' aimed at helping those who get addicted to gambling is also to be established under the new oversight body.

The Ministry of Finance, which has responsibility for the gaming sector, is also considering merging the Casino Gaming Commission with the Betting, Gaming and Lotteries Commission (BGLC).

Regarding the long-standing plans to merge the BGLC and the Jamaica Racing Commission (JRC), Shaw said a new committee will be named to continue discussions with the finance ministry's internal review team to finalise the tie-up.

In the meantime, the legislative review of both the BGLC Act and the JRC Act to govern the newly formed entity is ongoing.

"The amendments are expected to incorporate matters related to interactive and multichannel internet and mobile gaming," Shaw said.

tameka.gordon@gleanerjm.com