British Columbia to transition to a new regulator

The IGCO will focus exclusively on regulatory policy matters related to gambling, horse racing and responsible-gambling programs.
The IGCO will focus exclusively on regulatory policy matters related to gambling, horse racing and responsible-gambling programs.

The province of British Columbia is set to transition to a new gambling regulator in order to fight money laundering.

Canada.- The government of British Columbia has announced that in order to take action against money laundering, it will transition the province’s gambling regulator and provide it with greater independence to set and enforce adequate regulatory gambling policy.

The Gaming Policy and Enforcement Branch (GPEB) will be transitioned to the new independent gambling control office (IGCO). This comes after amendments to the Gaming Control Act.

The IGCO will focus exclusively on regulatory policy matters related to gambling, horse racing and responsible-gambling programs. The new regulatory body addresses concerns raised in a money laundering report, which highlighted that decisions about regulatory gambling policy should be made separately from decisions about revenue generation.

“The IGCO will have the mandate, authority and independence to ensure the overall integrity of gambling in B.C.,” said David Eby, Attorney General. “This change will make it far easier to keep dirty money out of our province. It is one of many concrete measures we are taking to disrupt money laundering, which has impacted British Columbians in so many ways.”

The government said in a statement that BC will also transform the way in which it regulates gambling. British Columbia’s regulator will establish a more flexible regulatory model that can adapt as new technology emerges.

The IGCO will be required to report publicly on its operations to the legislative assembly each year and will be given the autonomy to independently manage its public communications. The IGCO will be overseen by a general manager appointed by cabinet for a fixed term.

The province has started the work required to modernise the Gaming Control Act and aims to introduce legislation in spring 2021 that will bring the IGCO into force.

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