Carlos Baeza, Latamwin's Director

"The bill that regulates online gaming in Chile establishes an open and competitive process for granting licenses"

Carlos Baeza, director and legal counsel of Latamwin.
2022-11-15
Reading time 2:04 min

The director of the bookmaker Latamwin, Carlos Baeza, discussed the proposed law that seeks to regulate the development of online betting platforms in Chile and stated that it is an initiative that "will establish an open and competitive process for granting licenses."

In a column published by the betting house, Baeza commented on the bill that is currently in the Economy Commission of the Chilean Chamber of Deputies since March of this year, awaiting to be debated within the framework of tax reform to be proposed by the government of President Gabriel Boric.

In this context, the executive, who also acts as the legal advisor of Latamwin, said that the licensing process for the online sector in Chile, as it is set forth in the legal initiative, will be "different and unconnected with land-based casino operation licenses."

"The bill does not set a pre-established number of licenses but an open market in which any company that meets the requirements can apply. It will be the market itself that will determine the number of operators and the size of the market, not the regulator or the law," he stated.

He also indicated that the project establishes and regulates a regime of Operating Licenses that may be general or special.

He also commented that "with the bill, licensed operators will enjoy a competitive advantage over unregulated platforms, and a measure of protection from gray market activities."

"It should be enough to establish the necessary incentives for operators whilst protecting the rights of users. As such, there is likely to be a significant migration towards the regulated market," Baeza warned.

In addition, he said that "the bill establishes a series of mechanisms that will give the Chilean authorities more tools to combat illegal gambling," including the possibility to lock web domains and freeze payments, among other measures.

The Latamwin director also noted that the project "also levels the playing field between local and foreign operators, and players will certainly follow that trend."

"The provision that licenses will only be granted to companies with Chilean shareholders means that investors who are interested in the Chilean market will be obliged to incorporate a Chilean company and pay the same tax rates," he added.

Deadlines

Meanwhile, Baeza pointed out that "Congress is in the process of analyzing the regulation, but it is expected that from here onwards progress will be smoother". "Although it is unlikely that this bill will become law in the short term, it is expected to be approved by the end of 2023, or early 2024," he predicted.

In line with this, he emphasized that "now is the time when potential investors should consider Chile." "It is an emerging market that could become the next destination for operators looking for lighter operating conditions and a more financially sustainable and profitable place to do business," he noted.

Finally, Baeza detailed that the bill proposes that the regulator of land-based gaming in Chile, the Superintendence of Gaming Casinos, be renamed Superintendence of Casinos, Betting and Gaming, and thus begin to supervise and control online gaming.

Click here to access the bill that seeks to regulate online gambling in Chile.

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