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SiGMA iGaming Controversy over the latest SCJ decision prohibiting Chilean online casino games

The association believes that this change will have a negative impact on both the industry and the country

This past weekend, through a letter addressed to all the Chilean casino operating companies in the country and municipal casino concessionaires, the Superintendence of Casino Games informed that according to the provisions of the third paragraph of Article 5 of Law 19.995: “The games of chance referred to in this law and its regulations, may only be authorised and developed in the gaming casinos protected by the corresponding operation permit, as established in the following provisions.

In no case shall the operation permit include online games of chance”, prohibiting the option of gaming and betting in online casinos.

Amidst this decision the Chilean Casino Association delivered a message under the motto “The Law isn’t to be played with”, with which they considered that this bidding procedure “does not respect the law, violates the legal framework and unilaterally changes the rules of the game”.

SJC prohibits the option of gaming and betting in online casinos.

The Chilean State incited companies more than a decade ago to invest in the gambling and casino landscape of Chile, with which a measurable positive impact has been measured since then. The department of communication of the Chilean Casino Association mentioned “Chile’s promise that captivated us at the time was a tender that gave a horizon for operating casinos for 15 years, with a certain possibility of renewal for another 15 years if high-impact projects and important investments were generated in the country’s regions.

In response to that invitation, an amount of US$1.400 million was invested in projects such as casinos, hotels, tourism infrastructures and restaurants, which ended up generating an unprecedented income flow and movement in the communities related to these openings.

The entity assured of how happy they are of what they’ve achieved throughout the years since the Chilean State incited this investment in casino and gaming installations, but at the same time, are against the latest Superintendence decision, “Both the 2005 Law (19,995), which was in force at the time the awards were made and under which we decided to invest, and the 2015 Law (Law 20,856) confirm the conditions under which operating licenses must be re-licensed.

In fact, the fifth paragraph of the third transitory article of Law 19,995, introduced by Law 20,856 of 2015 – which included municipal casinos and considered an award system based on the contribution to the respective municipality -, literally states: ‘Operating permits granted prior to the amendment of this law shall be governed by the rules in force at the time of grant, unless subsequent rules imply better conditions for their operation”.

The association ended their communication regarding the Superintendence decision with “We believe in Chile, in its people and in its institutions. That is why we ask the authority to act responsibly and understand the negative impact this change in the rules of the game means for the industry and for the country. Failure to respect the law is a path with no return that deeply damages not only investment but also democracy”

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