This week the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) released its Annual Report for 2021. The report recapped the Authority’s achievements outlining the performance of the iGaming industry in Malta. It also detailed statistics for the gaming sector and its strategy for the future.
There are significant and obvious comparisons to 2020’s Annual Report taking into consideration the inclusion of Malta from the FATF grey list, which the country has since been removed from, and the difficulties faced by the sector during 2021 due to the pandemic.
The MGA took the following key supervisory activities during 2021:
54 On-Site Audits, 230 Desk Top Reviews, 10 licences were subject to enforcement measures (FIAU), 13 individuals and companies were deemed not to be up to standard, three applications were rejected, over 1,150 criminal screen checks were conducted, 91 interviews were conducted to determine suitability, 21 letters of breach were issued, 6,170 operators were given assistance and 79 websites were investigated for misleading information.
This resulted in:
63 warnings, seven cancelled licences, 31 administrative penalties, three regulatory settlements, 13 operators found in breach of regulations and 61 notices published on the website to prevent the public from falling victim to scams.
€176,016 in fines from Onsite Audits and Desk Top Reviews and €863,000 from Enforcement Measures.
Ryan Pace, a lawyer who was appointed to the position of chairman at MGA a year ago, believes that the achievements of MGA during the last year have contributed significantly towards Malta’s removal from the FATF grey list. He also added that the recent changes that have been implemented will contribute to strengthen Malta’s jurisdiction. Dr Pace continued to say that the Authority and the Board “have worked tirelessly to perpetuate the vision of the MGA becoming a world-class gaming authority.”
Carl Brincat, CEO of the Malta Gaming Authority, spoke of significant progress this year. He said, “we used 2021 to start laying the groundwork for improvements that we will see in the months and years to come..”
He continued to say that during the past year, the priority had been to remove unnecessary bureaucracy that did not add value to the industry and to move towards leaner and more effective regulation. Dr Brincat believes that the results of this strategy will be visible in the months and years to come.
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