Industry Reports

Online Sports Betting Potential May Awake Canadian Authorities from Slumber

Casino gambling is a popular pastime in Canada. The Internet changed the way many industries work and gambling makes no exception to the rule. Online gambling is one of the most lucrative businesses that have attracted the attention of innumerable people around the world. Although highly restricted in several countries, online sports betting is a flourishing sector of the multifaceted gambling industry.

Every country has its own legislative framework relating to online gambling, which makes the subject of the legality of online sports betting even more complicated. In many countries around the world, it has become more than simple to place an online sports bet. Looking at Canada’s legal framework, it is worth to mention that the country has adopted a gambling-friendly approach sometime in the 1970s.

The situation is a little bit different when it comes to online gambling. Canadian authorities have turned a blind eye to the flourishing multi-billion-dollar online gambling industry. The upcoming Super Bowl has stimulated many countries around the world to reconsider their laws relating to online sports betting. In Canada, gambling falls under provincial jurisdiction. Some of the provinces operate their own online casinos. The authorities allow players to use such betting outlets and place bets over the Internet.

Unfortunately, the choice is not wide, so the players prefer to wager through online sports wagering sites, which are based overseas. Under the Canadian gambling law, it is illegal to provide online gambling services of any kind to Canadian citizens. Nevertheless, Canadian players have unrestricted access to such offshore websites.

Canadian Provinces Eye Single Event Sports Betting Legalization

Quite unsurprisingly, the complex legal ins and outs of online sports gambling did not stop Canadians to place bets at offshore sports betting sites. Thousands of Canadians are wagering on sports through offshore websites each year. According to the Canadian Gaming Association, C$10 billion is being funneled into illegal bookmakers and additional C$4 billion is being wagered through unregulated offshore websites, circumventing the country’s tax authorities.

According to unnamed industry observers, ignoring the advent of online gambling has resulted in billions in lost revenues. Nine provinces are currently pushing for legal single-event sports wagering. The Liberal government also supports the idea of legal single-event sports betting. Needless to say, the unprecedented growth and expansion of the gambling industry have had many positive economic impacts, including large tax revenues and lower unemployment rates.

Interestingly, the legalization of the online sports betting is not expected to result in an increase in problem gambling prevalence, but even the opposite. Industry experts explained that a regulated online sports betting industry will protect the players’ interest and establish a safe gambling environment.