Malta’s success in financial services and igaming hinges on robustness of regulation and supervision


Finance Minister Prof. Edward Scicluna stressed that Malta’s igaming industry is a success primarily thanks to Malta’s over-all regulatory model which combines rigorousness and transparency with flexibility and adaptability.

Prof. Scicluna was speaking during the inauguration of the new Betsson Group Experience Centre, located in the Ta’ Xbiex Waterfront, on Thursday 30th January 2014. The inauguration was also addressed by Betsson Group CEO Ulrik Bengtsson.

 

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During a brief address, Prof. Scicluna welcomed the opportunity to inaugurate the premises of Betsson, one of Malta’s first igaming operators, and added that Malta’s successes in the igaming sector primarily stem from Malta’s regulatory model which combines rigorousness and transparency with flexibility and adaptability.

“We should not become complacent in the face of our success, but keep working to develop more rigorous regulatory standards and more forceful supervisory practices to guarantee the stability of individual financial institutions and the system as a whole. Our reputation as an international financial centre ultimately depends on the robustness of our approach to regulation and supervision.”

Prof. Scicluna added that the Government is also looking towards innovation and research to ensure that Malta remains at the forefront of the gaming industry. “A lot of importance is being given to updating the current framework and trying to create new gaming niche industries. Research is being carried out to enhance the entire digital gaming strategy of Malta. From an educational perspective, courses in digital gaming and related areas have also been set up and enhanced in order to improve the skills and knowledge of the Maltese in these areas.”

Prof. Scicluna underlined however that it is important to never lose sight of those areas which are at risk of being affected negatively by the gaming and other such industries. He said that it was because of this that the Government has launched the Responsible Gaming Foundation, which is responsible for to promoting sensible activities in the gaming industry and guard against harmful excessive gambling. “We have to educate people to be aware of the risks, and respect certain activities, and help them realise that it is important to be responsible when engaging with them,” Prof. Scicluna said.

Prof. Scicluna also stated that Malta’s successes in the igaming sector give rise to competitors trying to erode our competitiveness through restrictive legislation in the European Union. “The Government will not allow Malta’s competitors to stifle our competitiveness through practices which go against the spirit of the Single Market,” Prof. Scicluna said.

Prof. Scicluna further added that the Government is commited to eliminating needless bureaucracy and red tape, adding that for this reason, courses are being launched to educate the public service as to the importance of private industry in our economy. He noted that that same morning, he launched a course titled “Principles of Taxation” at the Centre for Development Research and Training (CDRT) which goes wider than the administration of a given tax.

Betsson group is a fast growing company with more than 50 years’ experience from the gaming industry. Betsson consist of number of brands which operates games directed at end consumers through partnerships, and through its own web sites, some of the most well-known websites such as betsson.com, betsafe.com, casinoeuro.com and nordicbet.com. Customers primarily originate from the Scandinavian countries and other parts of Europe. Betsson AB is listed on NASDAQ OMX Nordic Mid Cap List, (BETS).
In Malta, it has the core part of the company with around 600 employees. Betsson opened the office in Malta in 2006 and at that time it employed roughly 35 employees. Betsson also have offices in Manila, Tallin, Keiv, Stockholm in total Betsson have around 1000 of employees.

 

– Monday, 3rd February, 2014

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