The Association of Permit Holders, Operators, and Suppliers of the Entertainment and
Gambling Industry in Mexico (AIEJA) informed that it has requested the government to move forward in the updating of the Federal Law of Sweepstakes and Gaming, due to the presence of more than 100 companies that operate without control at a national level.
The entity points out that the current legislation, published in 1947, has not been reformulated in 76 years, so it is not updated for the current environment of the industry. The current growth of the Mexican casino industry merits a new law that adapts to the contemporary context, with clearer and more forceful regulations, they added.
Furthermore, they report that compulsive gambling affects 1.3% of gamblers and that informality represents a problem as it does not comply with standards that guarantee a safe environment for gamblers and operators.
While countries such as Colombia, Spain, and Peru already use self-exclusion buttons so that staff, by means of an early reaction, can channel such cases, Mexico has not yet implemented them, which hinders the timely detection of individuals prone to generate addiction.
During his appearance at the III International Gaming Convention held at the end of March, Miguel Ángel Ochoa Sánchez, President of AIEJA, pointed out that among the challenges still pending for the gaming industry is the updating of the law and that it is essential for the Federal Government to implement a single tax contribution.
Due to the absence of updated regulations, about 60% of online casino platforms operate outside national control. These generate $300 million but do not pay taxes.
Miguel Ángel Ochoa Sánchez, President of AIEJA
"As you well know, in Mexico the regulation of online gambling is still insufficient. Of the 100% of the existing offer available online, we estimate that only 40% is considered legal, according to the current legal framework. In other words, it has a license linked to a licensee recognized by the regulator, which is the Mexican Ministry of the Interior," Ochoa told Yogonet.
AIEJA explained that of all the online sportsbooks active in Mexico, the reliable ones are those that work with the permits issued by the Ministry of the Interior since they comply with all the required parameters. These licenses are visible on the websites and guarantee that such platforms operate in a 100% legal manner and that they also comply with their tax obligations.
The rest of the spectrum is divided among those with concessions in their countries of origin, such as the United Kingdom, Curacao, or Malta, but without a Mexican licensee that allows them to be strictly legal in Mexican territory, although some of them are currently in the process. In addition, a good number of these spaces that operate without any type of international legislation can create damages by not paying taxes and not offering any type of protection for the users.
With the rise of online casinos, online sports betting, and the growing interest of the public in eSports, it is necessary to have highly trained personnel and economically protected areas with tax benefits for the correct operation of the establishments and certified machines to ensure that the customer is not cheated, the latter aspects focused on land-based gambling, the Mexican association noted.