Legislation to legalize and regulate online casino gambling is in motion around the globe. New laws to make online casinos legal have been, or are in the process of being, passed in the UK, France, Spain, Argentina, Estonia, the United States and a variety of other countries. With all this legislation flying around, Ireland is starting to talk about getting in on the action.
Ireland has yet to jump into the online casino scene. A 1956 Gaming and Lotteries Act that bans casino businesses has prevented Ireland from setting up a network of online casinos or catering to Irish gamblers. However, many people are saying that this 1956 act is outdated. Ist was made a law over fifty years ago, before online casinos (or even the Internet) existed! Additionally, statistics show that if Ireland could take over a mere 5% of the online casino industry they could create 5,000 more jobs, each with a salary of over $55,000 per year.
David Hickson, one of the directors of the Gaming and Leisure Association, said that Ireland has a great opportunity to expand into the online casino sector. After all, the United Kingdom has recently created a new regulatory structure for online casinos. The UK structure has laid out rules for regulation as well as taxation of online casinos. Ireland would simply have to adjust these rules to fit their countrys own needs.
If Ireland is going to enter the online casino industry they need to do it now. France, Spain and other countries around the globe are currently making changes to their own gambling laws and online casino regulations. The time to act is now, according to Hickson. If Ireland waits it will lose its momentum.
Although Ireland isnt home to a large number of online casinos, they are familiar with the industry. There is a popular software company based out of Dublin that provides software to a number of online casinos around the globe. This company provides a variety of casual and casino games including online blackjack, craps, baccarat, casino roulette, video poker, poker, online casino slot machines and more. With over 400 employees working in Dublin to provide new casino games, Ireland already has a piece of the industry. The question becomes whether or not they want to take their involvement in the world of online casino gaming further by passing legislation to legalize and regulate online gambling within Ireland.
It should be interesting to see what Ireland decides and how it impacts other countries that are deciding whether or not they want to pass similar legislation. In the United States, for instance, there are a number of bills on the table for the legislation of online casino gambling and skill games. As more and more countries enter into the industry it will be interesting to see which countries take control of the largest percentages of the market.