Malta has today established itself as one of the foremost remote gaming jurisdictions in the world. The regulatory framework and fiscal environment, together with the fact that Malta also forms part of the European Union, has made Malta a domicile of choice within the industry.
Remote gaming activities in Malta, including casino-style games, poker, sports betting, betting exchanges, P2P, skins and lotteries through all types of technological media including the internet, mobile, telephone and fax, among other media, are regulated by the Lotteries and Gaming Authority (LGA). The provision of betting/gaming services from Malta requires a licence of the class appropriate to the operations, and the regulations provide a legal framework governing Maltese remote gaming operators, as well as a secure on-line environment to players. Licensees are expected to operate in compliance with Gaming regulations, as well as anti-money laundering legislation, electronic commerce legislation and other relevant laws.
The following classes of licences are available in Malta:
- Class 1: for operators who take a risk on repetitive games that are generated by random events (e.g. casino style games, lotteries, slots, etc.)
- Class 1 on 4 licensee: for operators offering all types of games of chance and games of skill operating on an existing Class 4 licensee.
- Class 2: for operators who create a market and take a risk by backing that market (e.g. odds betting and pool betting)
- Class 2 on 4 licensee: for operators who run a remote betting office on an existing Class 4 licensee
- Class 3: for operators who promote and abet gaming from Malta (e.g. P2P, betting exchanges, skins, tournaments, bingo)
- Class 3 on 4 licensee: for operators who promote gaming in return for a commission on an existing Class 4 licensee.
- Class 4: for operators who provide a software platform to host and manage the gaming operations of licensees in return for a commission, without partaking in any gaming risk.
The application process for obtaining a licence includes amongst others, a due diligence on the qualifying shareholders and key management personnel, a detailed business plan, an ability to demonstrate business and technical competence to carry out the operation and that the operation is covered by sufficient reserves or securities to ensure payment of player winnings and deposit returns, as well as the certification of the live system.
It is important to note that an applicant must appoint a Key Official who shall be approved by the LGA and who must be a director of the company and resident in Malta. The Key Official is responsible for the operations of the company and shall ensure that the company complies at all times with the laws and regulations and the conditions of the licence.
A licence of any class is granted for a period of five years and may be renewed thereafter for further periods of five years. A company may apply for more than one class of licence.