April 22, 2024 3 min read

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New Bill Proposes Regulation of Online Gambling in South Africa

The proposal was filed by the Democratic Alliance and comes after iGaming legislation hasn't gained much speed over the last decade

For three decades the African National Congress (ANC) has dominated the political scene in South Africa. This enabled the party’s majority to reject or approve different bills, making it difficult for the opposition to push for change. Yet, ahead of the upcoming national and provincial elections at the end of May, the Democratic Alliance (DA), the primary opponent of the ANC, introduced a new Remote Gambling Bill, proposing robust rules and regulation of the online gambling sector.

The bill comes after years of delay from the ANC, considering that the National Gambling Amendment Act was assented to the by the President in 2008 but was never signed. Upon introducing its Remote Gambling Bill, the DA claimed that the proposal comes after the ANC failed to “provide adequate protection and regulation within the online gambling industry.”

The newly proposed bill calls for the regulation of online gambling across South Africa. It follows best practices from other parts of the globe proposing a minimum gambling age of 18 years or older. Moreover, the Remote Gambling Bill seeks to prevent and protect minors and vulnerable individuals from being exposed to gambling, while setting a framework that ensures compliance with the country’s Financial Intelligence Center Act.

Under the DA’s proposal, South Africa would establish a robust framework that includes rules for licensing, combatting illegal gambling activities and punishing operators that do not adhere to the established rules. The proposal calls for the introduction of three types of licenses, granting the authority to award such licenses to a newly established regulator that would be tasked with overseeing the iGaming sector.

The Bill Proposes Regulation of Ads, Efforts against Criminal Activities

Besides protecting vulnerable players and minors, the proposal calls for strict rules for online gambling advertising. Similar to other markets where iGaming is legal, the bill proposes online gambling ads to contain a responsible gambling message. Moreover, iGaming advertisements also must not be misleading or target anyone under the legal gambling age.

Besides complying with the Financial Intelligence Center Act, the new proposal seeks to safeguard the industry from criminal activities, such as fraud or money laundering. Per the Remote Gambling Bill, the sector will be monitored while effective and complex rules will combat terrorism financing or money laundering attempts.

The Democratic Alliance (DA), today, officially had its Remote Gambling Bill, 2024, introduced in Parliament after more than two years of drafting and consultations with industry experts,

reads a statement by the Democratic Alliance

According to the DA, the recently released proposal comes after research was conducted for more than two years. During that time, experts in gambling and policymaking joined forces to help with draft of the bill.

Journalist

Jerome is a welcome new addition to the Gambling News team, bringing years of journalistic experience within the iGaming sector. His interest in the industry begun after he graduated from college where he played in regular local poker tournaments which eventually lead to exposure towards the growing popularity of online poker and casino rooms. Jerome now puts all the knowledge he's accrued to fuel his passion for journalism, providing our team with the latest scoops online.

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