The bill has passed the House of Commons and now has to be approved by the Senate to become law and allow single-event sports betting in Canada.
Canada.- A sports betting bill has passed the House of Commons in Canada taking the country a step closer to legalising single-event sports betting.
The current legislation, which prohibits single-event betting, has been criticised by lawmakers for being “ancient” and for pushing players to offshore sportsbooks.
It allows Canadians to bet on sports via provincial/territorial lottery companies, including online in some cases, but only via parlay bets, in which the ticket must include at least two games.
Tom Mayenknecht, a Vancouver-based sports marketing expert, told The Star newspaper that modernising the legislation is “long overdue.”
He said: “It’s impossible in this era to police people betting offshore. So this way, it keeps more of the money in Canada, both in terms of where it’s being spent and then secondly, the investment of a share of the proceeds back in the community.“
How would new sports betting legislation work in Canada
If passed by the Senate, Bill C-218 would give the provinces and territories full jurisdiction over single-event betting.
According to Paul Burns, president and CEO of the Canadian Gaming Association, each province and territory would be likely to do things slightly differently. Some may run their own betting services, while others will grant licences to private sportsbook operators or opt for a hybrid model.
Burns said that parlay bets are not fulfilling bettors intentions, as players are turning to more than 2,000 offshore and unregulated websites to bet.
“We get calls to our offices from people who have trouble getting their money out of sites,” he said.