Turning the Clover: Ireland Regulation's Time Has ComePublished May 24, 2019 by Lee R
Ireland's regulation system is turning a new leaf with a comprehensive reform project.
Ireland is looking forward to inserting a new gambling regulator in anticipation of a revamped regulation model.
Current Irish Minister of State David Stanton anticipates the new framework project will take some 18 months to complete. The project will conclude with the establishment of a new authority to oversee the legislation,
Speaking earlier this week at the Dáil Éireann, Stanton confirmed work on the revised General Scheme of the country’s Gambling Control Bill had begun, with the new regulatory regime in place by 2020.
The New Legislation
First published in 2013, the Gambling Control Bill is now being amended to incorporate a series of recommendations published in March by an inter-departmental working committee.
As a result, Stanton committed to establishing a regulatory authority for the industry and updating the country's licencing structure to accommodate online play.
The report also contains regulations for gambling advertising and sponsorship, while offering protections against money laundering and manipulation of sporting competitions.
The report further called the government to task for improving consumer protection while calling for the creation of an alternative dispute resolution mechanism and raising of the awareness of problem gambling in general.
To this end, Stanton seeks the establishment of specific units for sports integrity, anti-money laundering and consumer protection, licence applications, and licence enforcement.
Stanton indicated at a May seminar that the costly measures would ultimately be self-financed, citing income from application and licence fees and fines imposed on non-compliant operators as effective cost-covering measures.
The New Era
Stanton called the new project “the best opportunity of a modern and effective approach to the licensing and regulation of a fast growing and evolving gambling industry, calling the revisions to the Gambling Control Bill a “comprehensive reform of gambling regulations in Ireland.”
Specific Measures Known
Some specific measures include maximum gaming machine stakes and prizes of €10 and €750 respectively and an 18+ age limit on betting and gaming products,
Ireland has regulated online gaming since 2015, but the current regulatory framework has been in place since 1956, so the timing of Gaming and Lotteries (Amendment) Bill 2019 couldn't appear better—both for the interests of increasing revenues for the Irish government and for bring safe gaming to the Irish market.