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Understanding the Different Gambling Licenses

For individuals and organisations to be granted online gambling licenses (which also covers online casino licenses), such must undergo several checks to ascertain their credibility and trustworthiness. Such checks include security checks, procedural checks and operational practices, game fairness and random number generation guarantee, financial and tax status.

Applicants of online gambling licenses are subjected to regular technical tests, financial and tax auditing with the sole purpose of ensuring that the gambling body/company can offer punters quality services, player satisfaction and safe gaming environment.

Not all countries of the world have gambling regulators. However, there are regions across the world that try to regulate both land and online gambling operators and their activities. These regions can be seen as gambling jurisdiction and the gambling regulators form the Gambling authorities.

Various Gambling Jurisdictions and Gambling Laws

The major functions of gambling and casino regulators are to:

  • Provide gambling and casino regulations for gambling providers to follow
  • Ensure that players get fair play

Gambling operators have to base part or all of their operations within licensing jurisdictions. This implies that online gambling operators will only seek for online gambling license (online casino license inclusive) from casino gambling regulators considering majorly their locations. Below are some of the popular gambling & casino regulators and their jurisdictions across the world.

Malta Gaming Authority

Malta is one of the major online gambling & casino regulators in the world. It has granted online gambling licenses to over 380 online gaming sites in the world since the year 2000. It usually grants license to online gambling operators through the Lotteries and Gaming Authority (LGA).

The LGA offers 4 different types of online gambling license based on operators’ need.

  • The Class 1 gaming License which is normally granted to operators of online casino games which includes games of chance and games that uses random number generator (RNG)
  • Class 2 gaming License which is granted to operators of online sports betting.
  • Class 3 gaming License granted to advertisers and promotion companies operating from Malta.
  • Class 4 gaming License granted to parent companies that host and manage online gambling operators.

Operators seeking gambling licenses from Malta Gaming Authorities are granted license after meeting up with the requirements and upon the payment of licensing fee of €2,500. This is renewable every 5 years with 0.5% of operators turn over as tax.

Malta was included in UK’s white-listed regions/countries due to its superior gambling regulations resulting in more companies seeking to serve Briton’s gambling interest settling in Malta.

Curaçao Gambling Jurisdiction

Curacao is an island nation in the Caribbean, it was part of the Netherlands Antilles until 2010. It is one of the most popular online gaming jurisdictions in the world that provides gambling and online casino regulations through the e-gaming License Authority which was established in 1996.

In 2010, the nation created Curacao Internet Gaming Association whose main job is to ensure that gambling operators outside of its shores adhere strictly to the code of conduct and licensing requirements of Curacao’s e-gaming Licensing Authority.

Thee-gaming Licensing Authority is one of the gambling regulators that have issued the most online gambling licenses (which also cover casino licenses) to gambling operators. This is because their licensing requirements can be met easily by small start-up casino operators coupled with IT infrastructure and hosting support offered by Curacao.

Kahnawake Gaming Commission

Khanawake is an Indian reserve in Quebec, Canada. Kahnawake is one of the earliest gambling jurisdiction in the world to recognise the potentials of online gambling with the setting up of Kahnawake Gambling Commission in 1996 to provide strict gambling and online casino regulations for would-be gambling providers.

Kahnawake Gambling Commission has granted online gambling licenses and online casino licenses to more than 100 of online gambling operators and 3 land-poker rooms located within Kahnawake. There are 4 types of Licenses issued by Kahnawake Gambling Commission

  • The Interactive Gaming License (IGC)
  • Client Provider Authorization (CPA) which costs about CAD$25,000 in application fees.
  • Secondary Client Provider Authorization (Secondary CPA)
  • Key Person License (KPL). Applicants of this class of license are charged CAD$5,000 as application fees.

Khanawake Gaming Commission works with other regulatory bodies and financial service bodies to ensure that gambling operators render smooth gambling services to players.


This is a small country in the European Union home to more than 280 online gambling operators. This is due to the fact that it is one of the jurisdictions in the EU that offers cheaper licensing to online gambling operators with fair gambling and online casino regulations for gambling operators to operate with.

Tax on gambling operators is placed at 1% of gross earnings capped at minimum of £85,000 and maximum of £425,000 with no value added tax (VAT) which is considered as ‘very affordable’ by most gambling operators.

Gibraltar licenses gambling operators with proven track records with gambling software have passed rigorous testing.

United Kingdom Gambling Commission

Gambling in the UK is regulated by the UK Gambling Commission which was created by the Gambling Act of 2005. In 2013, it took over the regulation of National Lottery from the National Lottery Commission.

UK’s gambling laws are pretty straightforward as almost all gambling activities in the UK are legalised. The objectives of the Gambling Commission which can be summed up as follow:

  • To ensure that gambling does not become a source of crime and disorder
  • To ensure that gambling environment is safe and secure for players
  • To protect children from being exposed to gambling
  • To provide gambling and casino regulations for all gambling providers.

UK Gambling Commission grants online gambling licenses and online casino licenses only to gambling operators with part or all of their operations in the UK. However, gambling operators in the white-listed jurisdictions are also permitted to operate within the UK. So far, the gambling commission has licensed more than 90 online gambling operators in the UK.

Gambling operators pay income tax as high as 15% due to lucrative gambling business in the UK, available world-class infrastructure, and security services. It is safe to say that UK is one of the most lucrative gambling jurisdictions in the world irrespective of the fact that they have very strict gambling and online casino regulations.

Antigua and Barbuda

These two islands offer very expensive online gambling licenses and casino licenses which includes non-refundable fee of $10,000 paid for due diligence, $75,000 annual licensing fee for interactive gaming, $50,000 annual licensing fee for interactive wagering and $1,000 for key-person license with renewal fee of $250 yearly. They have fairly strict gambling and online casino regulations for gambling providers to follow.