Costa Rica to Regulate Online Gambling

Published August 30, 2010 by OCR Editor

Costa Rica to Regulate Online Gambling

Move would be felt by consumers and companies in the USA.

The government in the Central American nation of Costa Rica appears set to regulate the online gambling industry, following the release of draft plans by the Finance Ministry.

Around 380 gambling companies are currently based in Costa Rica, most of them serving US consumers, mainly because they pay no taxes and only need a date-processing license to be allowed to operate in the country.

The proposal, which comes just three months after the election of President Laura Chincilla, aims to end the current situation by establishing a gambling control board for online gaming that would be funded by a new levy of 0.5 percent of gross income.

A tax of five percent would also be implemented under the scheme, in order to fight increasing crime and fund the country's education system.

The new board would be subordinate to a council chaired by the country's Minister of the Interior and Police and it would issue licenses valid for a maximum of six years and attainable for a fee of $50,000 per year.

However, this is far from the first time that Costa Rican authorities have tried to implement measures to regulate the online casino industry. Just last year the Finance Ministry attempted to introduce a two percent tax on gambling, after estimating it would raise $85 million.

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