Online casinos could be legalised in Canada

British Columbia Lottery Corporation announced on 20th August 2009 it would launch online gaming sites in order to generate an income of not less than $ 100 million per year.

The games offered by the Canadian company, such as blackjack, roulette and poker would be available on its website PlayNow from March 2010. If the project is fulfilled, there would be a first on the North-American continent, where online casinos have been banished so far.

“This is not really an innovative project, but if it was officially legalized by a north-american government, it would be indeed a great innovation”, said Bill Thompson, Professor of public law at the University of Nevada.

The Lottery hopes to get its part of the $ 87 million amount spent by residents of British Columbia on offshore sites. Michael Graydon, the Lottery Corporation CEO, stated: “Rather than let all that money slip away in some tax-paradises like Antigua, we seek to benefit from the opportunity that is giving to us to bring this money back in the country”.

Unfortunately for the company, this comes after a controversial statement made on 17th August, by which it was announced that the weekly limit on PlayNow deposits could be established between $ 120 and $10 000.

Some politicians ans especially those from Social Democratic Party, didn’t hesitate to strongly criticize the decision, which “was made without taking into consideration people with addiction problems”. But the Lottery responded to these attacks, stating that a security system would be put in place to prevent customers from depositing money in their accounts before 24 hours from another deposit.

If the proposal is approved, this could be a gateway for the introduction of online casinos in the United States.

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