Malta’s new regulatory framework for the iGaming industry will be introduced by the end of March 2017, Joseph Cuschieri, Executive Chairman of the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) said when addressing delegates of the eight edition of the Malta iGaming Seminar (MiGS). The conference, which aims to bring together C-level professionals from the iGaming industry in a number of networking activities, exhibitions and seminars, is held at the Hilton in St. Julian’s this week.
Last year’s edition was attended by 430 professionals and 45 speakers, and ambitions for this year are set even higher. The event started on Monday evening with a welcome party at the Portomaso Casino during the final table of Battle of Malta.
Economy Minister Chris Cardona stressed Malta’s commitment to the iGaming industry. “We are continuously reinventing ourselves to adapt to this growing industry.” The new regulations that Malta is currently developing aim “to create a framework that is both robust and flexible.” Malta is moving ahead, Cardona said, and “we should not be shy of our financial attractiveness.” The digital economy also is very high on the country’s agenda. “For 2017, we are determined to make Malta the first Wifi state in the world.”
“Innovation is becoming mission critical,” Joseph Cuschieri, agreed. “Our thinking as a jurisdiction for the last 30 years has always been more forward looking than other European countries, but we need to remain thought-leaders and come up with new approaches,” he said. “I promise that we will publish the new regulations for consultation early next year. By the end of March 2017, the new legislation should be in place.” The updated regulations will also see a new tax structure being introduced and an economic and financial impact assessment is underway. Cuschieri also said that the MGA is currently consulting with Malta’s Central Bank and other relevant authorities on the introduction of virtual currencies.
“Our thinking as a jurisdiction has always been more forward looking than other European countries... we need to remain thought-leaders"
The two conference days will see the who’s who of the iGaming industry share their insight and knowledge on topics such as eSports, virtual currencies and blockchain, as well as new and changing markets. “For the next 36 hours you are going to have some of the most knowledgeable people in the iGaming industry around you. So you should make the most of it,” AJ Thompson said. While AJ Thompson, who is CTO at the Sappaya Group, is Tuesday’s conference chair, Michael Caselli of iGaming Business Magazine will chair the conference on Wednesday.
The Malta Gaming Authority, BMIT, NetEnt, JPA, GO, RE/MAX, the Malta Tourism Authority, Akamai and ARQ Group are sponsoring the event.