The last few months have been more and more promising for online gaming operators in Colombia. In October 2016, Colombia became the first country in Latin America that officially approved online gambling. The first legal license was given in June to Wplay.co, owned by the Aquila Global Group, an electronic gaming machine operator from Medellin.
According to the news reports on slotsjudge.com, Colombia has taken even more steps towards regulated online gaming market. In 2017, Coljuegos, the Colombian main regulatory body, has issued 2 legal licenses. According to Juan B. Pérez Hidalgo, the Coljuegos President, „at least two more licenses” will be issued this year.
One of the online casinos interested in entering the licensed online gaming market in Colombia is Redbet. As you can read in the Redbet Casino review, the operator holds various licenses from many countries, like Gibraltar Regulatory Authority, Malta Gaming Authority, and the UK Gambling Commission, however, it is still not enough for the new Colombian regulations. The main idea behind the changes happening in the Colombian online gaming market is to end all the illegal activities and provide a safe environment for online gambling enthusiasts. The government of Colombia wants to encourage more companies and operators, both from Colombia and foreign ones, to apply for legal licenses.
New regulations on Colombian online gaming market
As mentioned before, the very first company that received a legal and authorized license was Wplay.co. In this way, Wplay.co has a green light to provide various online gaming services for Colombian citizens.
The second company that has obtained an official license was Corredor Empresarial. The license includes sports betting, slot machines, roulette, and other games of chance. The games provided by Corredor Empresarial will be available on Betplay.com.co. The company received its legal license in September.
Changes in Colombian online gaming market have, of course, two sides. A company that receives a license is able to legally operate and offer its services to the players but on the other hand, it will also have to face a 15% tax on gross revenue. Juan B. Pérez Hidalgo says that this will allow the Colombian government to strengthen the country’s economics and increase the financial resources for the social issues. The President of Coljuegos also believes that the steps that have been taken will be crucial in the expanding process of seeking new perspectives in the fast-growing online gaming industry.
No pain, no gain
Before releasing the first 2 legal licenses for online gaming operators, the government of Colombia has put more than 300 foreign operators, such as Bet365, Playbet, Betmotion, and PokerStars, on a blacklist. Coljuegos started to block the illegal domains earlier this year, in July. Colombian authorities want to end the times of illegal operators available on the market and make the locally-licensed companies the main source of income from the revenues. Most of the blacklisted operators have quit their activities on Colombian markets, while some of them still consider getting a license.