Analysis

Puerto Rico to regulate sports betting – without remote

All looks good for Puerto Rico to regulate sports-betting after Governor Wanda Vázquez Garced approved a Senate Bill.

The governor’s signature paves the way for sports-betting regulation.

But the new regulations will not enable bettors to register and open accounts remotely.

It was one of the last measures signed by Vázquez Garced before she stepped down after 16 months in government.

No remote registration

However, one of the key amendments of the new legislation is that players will not be able to open accounts via remote registration features.

The outgoing Executive Director of the Gaming Commission, José Maymó Azize, told local news outlet Primera Hora:

“Project 1534 amends the law in some aspects that needed to be changed. 

“The most significant change is the fact that under the original law, players could register online and in person. 

“Now, with this amendment, the first registration is required to be in person.”

The change goes against what much of the industry calls to enable players to bet safely during the current pandemic.

Maymo Azize said the regulatory process had been completed. But because it had happened during the transition period it is yet to be unveiled.

He added: “The truth is that it has been a very complicated process, full of obstacles. 

“But some regulations are ready to be presented. They will define the sports-betting and fantasy-sports activities.”

The new regulations will allow for commercial retail, online sports, fantasy and eSports betting. 

Puerto Rico’s horseracing wagering operations are currently run on a retail and online monopoly basis and casino gaming is allowed in resort hotels.

New jobs and revenues 

Esports is interesting. The regulations have been created with the objective of enabling new industries and businesses to create jobs and new revenues.

Vázquez Garced added: “I signed PS1534 with great satisfaction. 

“With this amendment, we can complete and launch a new industry with the potential to create thousands of jobs.

“It’s a measure that paves the way for the esports and sports-betting industries in Puerto Rico, and encourages businesses and jobs in this sector.”

The Gaming Commission selected Gaming Laboratories International (GLI) to advise on the regulation of eSports operations.

Jake Pollard

Jake Pollard is an experienced journalist and editor who has covered the online gaming and betting industry for many years. He has written for the leading media outlets as well as operators and suppliers in the igaming space. His current areas of focus are wide-ranging and include regulatory developments in the US, emerging markets in South America and how European countries are adapting to a decade of igaming regulation.

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