The approval takes online gambling in Uruguay one step closer to legalisation.
Uruguay.- The Uruguayan senate has passed a bill that would legalise online gambling in the South American country. The bill now moves to the House of Representatives for its consideration. The move comes after Uruguay passed a bill banning offshore online gambling sites in 2017.
If the bill is passed, it will allow online gambling to be regulated by Uruguay’s General Directorate of Casinos, which currently regulates land-based gaming within the Ministry of Economy and Finance. A register would be created to monitor online gambling providers.
The bill also includes provisions for the creation of a fund that would direct between 5 and 8 per cent of income to gambling harm prevention and treatment. Meanwhile, financial penalties for breaches of regulations have been set between UYU$10,000 (€245) and UYU$100,000 (€2,450). Operators could also lose their licences for serious breaches. The law would come into effect a day after being approved by the executive.
Uruguay has a population of 3.47 million, with more than 40 per cent living in the capital Montevideo. Uruguay created a national lottery in 1819 and has land-based casinos and gaming halls.
Elsewhere in South America, Peru has legalised online gambling and sports betting. President Pedro Castillo signed Bill 31,557 into law this week. The legislation introduces a 12 per cent tax on net income to be shared among the Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Tourism, and the Peruvian Sports Institute and the public treasury.