Antigua Jurisdiction Predicts Bright FutureBy: Rick Balding, Friday December 26th 2008
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The Financial Services Regulatory Commission is the body that oversees licensing operations in the offshore gambling jurisdiction of Antigua and Barbuda. The Commission’s Director of Gaming, Kaye McDonald, said that on the basis of applications received the number of licensees is set to almost double. The reason for this marked increase has been given as Antigua making it to the white list of the United Kingdom's Gambling Commission.
Making it to the white list has two advantages. One advantage is that it increases the credibility of the gambling organization because a stringent vetting process is involved in the white listing. The second and more important advantage is that the gambling organization is allowed to advertise in the United Kingdom media. Since the gambling jurisdiction of Antigua has made it to the white list, its licensees are automatically allowed to advertise in the United Kingdom and this has increased the attraction of Antigua manifold. Applications for licenses have been received from new gambling organizations and also from those organizations that hold licenses from other jurisdictions but want to switch over to Antigua. Antigua was the first gambling jurisdiction and by virtue of its policies it was a premier jurisdiction even before the white listing. The increased number of licensees will have a positive effect on its economy. The increased number of licensees will create new jobs that are required to manage the new servers and other infrastructure that will be created. Employment will increase over technical and managerial arenas.
The jurisdiction of Antigua had to fight hard for the white listing. Initially it was not included whereas some of the European jurisdictions were included. The Financial Services Regulatory Commission filed an appeal with the UK Gambling Commission and after protracted negotiations Antigua was ultimately put on the white list.
This was more than welcome after the bad patch that Antigua had been going through since the passing of the UIGEA. Many of Antigua’s licensees lost their American customers, who accounted for a significant portion of their business. Antigua has taken up the matter with the United States but with little success. However if the new regime in the United States changes its direction on online gaming then Antigua will get a further boost as a gambling jurisdiction.
Now that Antigua is on the white list it will be participating in the International Casino Expo in London in January 2009 along with other white listed organizations such as Malta, Alderney and Isle of Man. It would hope to add to the illustrious list of its current licensees that include Super Slots, VIP Slots and Millionaire Casino.
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