hat are the main challenges that the Colombian gambling industry has faced in 2014?
The informal economy continues to be one of the major problems which affects the sector. While the majority of transactions and operations are in the hands of formal operators, informal operators continue to do business. On the other hand, online gaming has been hard to implement because the necessary conditions of knowledge and technological availability that allow the process and sector to develop appropriately do not exist.
What is your vision as representative of the operators?
Business will be affected if the state does not take the necessary measures towards illegal competition, and if it does not set suitable conditions of competitiveness or strengthen the nation's technological structure for the implementation of the online connection.
What have the main regional operations transmitted you?
Both unfair competition and the lack of the legal security significantly affects those in the sector who do comply with the regulation.
Have there been any changes and/or improvements with regards previous years?
We noted a significant improvement and increase in legal sales thanks to the state push against illegal operations. However, once restrictions and inspections are no longer enforced, they once again negatively affect the formal sales. This simply proves that when there are state restrictions to combat illegal operations, conditions in the sector improve considerably.
What are your plans for 2015?
After15 years in this business, to keep on working on the professionalization of the sector, to generate and build trust towards the state, to build partnerships in equal terms with both the government and the private sector, and to be a reference for both public and private entities.
What are the main challenges for you as a federation and for the industry as a whole?
To protect the trade union with regards to the amendments being floated in Congress. We expect the federation to become a symbol of a proven and trusted guarantee for both the state and public in general that its members comply with the law. Additionally, our goal is to continue bringing all legal, administrative and technological support to all operators so as to help business growth.