Politicians on the Channel Island of Jersey, already a burgeoning financial services centre, have voted overwhelmingly to introduce an online gambling licensing regime. Although concerns were raised by one deputy about gambling addiction, the proposal was passed with 38 votes in favour, four against and one abstention.
However, further complications that may delay further development by at least a month have since arisen due to the Economic Affairs chairman's insistence on closer scrutiny and an assessment of the proposals. Deputy Mike Higgins said this week that his panel needed more time to assess the proposed regulations.
The island government's Economic Development Minister criticised Deputy Higgins' decision to delay the process, saying it would paint Jersey in a very negative light.
Senator Maclean said a number of businesses were currently applying for licenses, along with international brand names looking to re-locate to Jersey, and that the new e-gaming business represented income and jobs for the island at a time when they are desperately needed.
The Senator said that Higgins' department had been given several months to analyse the legislation, especially after an in-principle debate took place last April.
MacLean went on to point out that e-gambling had already created economic diversity in neighbouring Channel Islands like Guernsey and Alderney, where according to independent analysis by KPMG, e-gambling contributed £7 million in 2007 for Guernsey coffers, which grew to £50 million by 2009, and that future growth was estimated at a further 40%.
Discussions regarding a licensing and regulatory regime in Jersey have been ongoing since 2006 amid estimates that such a move could generate some £50 million for the island.
Source: InfoPowa News