Home NewsRegulations & Licenses Curacao Gambling Regulation Bill enters Parliament

Curacao Gambling Regulation Bill enters Parliament

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The Curacao parliament is currently considering a bill to regulate gambling in the island.

A notice has been sent by the Ministry of Finance to all licence holders who are currently operating under current legislation (NOOGH). This includes the key milestones to ensure a smooth transition to the newly enacted legislative framework.

In the future, the National Ordinance for Games of Chance will change how gambling in this region is regulated.

Re-regulations will change some aspects of current legislation. The main changes include the licensing types and operator fees.

Renewal of current gaming licences by master licensees

There will no longer be any new Master License extensions. The Master Licensors can only continue operating and allowing sublicensees until the current renewals have expired. The LOK will come into effect first, or the current renewals expire.

The Master Licensor is required to notify the GCB of any sub-licenses that remain in effect as soon as the LOK expires, or if there are still 12 weeks left on the current renewal, whichever occurs first.

If Master Licensors wish to operate independently after this date, they will have to wait for LOK to be implemented before applying for a licence.

What are the Milestones?

After 31 March 2024, it will be impossible to register sub-licences through the Curacao Gaming Control Board’s (GCB) website and apply for a licence directly under current law if the sub-licensee so requests.

There will no longer be any new Master Licence extensions.

Portal opened officially on the 1st of September. Registrations of applicants and sublicensee holders were possible from the 1st November. Portal has two main functions: processing of new requests under current legislation, and registration of licensees.

After 31 March, any sub-licensee who has not registered their domains on the GCB Portal and isn’t listed with them will be unable to continue operating.

The transition to the new LOK framework will only apply to holders of direct licenses under the NOOGH after 31 March. This is known as the “grandfathering”. The applications in process will be continued without interruption.

Operators who wish to operate in Curacao but have not yet applied for a direct license from the GCB by March 31 can continue using their sub-licence only until either the master licence expires, or the LOK comes into effect – whichever is the earlier date.

Sub-licensees must then apply for a brand new LOK.

The GCB also renewed all Curacao gambling licenses. These renewals are scheduled to end in 2024, August.

License holders can display the Digital Seal in their websites starting 1 January 2024. The GCB will issue this Digital Seal. Applicants who have registered and submitted an application may also be granted permission to display the Digital Seal. In the future, The GCB is expected to issue a new policy regarding Digital Seals.

What is the current jurisdiction?

Curacao announced its new overhaul of gambling in July 2022. Curacao’s new reform schedule was announced by the Dutch government in January of this year.

Sixienne Jansen – legal advisor for the Curacao Ministry of Finance – presented the new timeline that will govern Curacao from 1 September.

The pace of things only increased from that point. Javier Silvania spoke in support of LOK, Curacao’s Minister of Finance in September. It would be a safety net to prevent the Financial Action Task Force from greylisting Curacao.

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