The Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) participated in the extraordinary expert group meeting held on 27 November 2015 on gambling services which sought to formalise the European Commission’s plans to enhance cross-border cooperation between member states through a voluntary arrangement with a view to tackle challenges related to gambling through what the Commission has described to be ‘the first agreement of its kind in the world’.

The meeting was testimony of the commitment shown by the respective EU/EEA gaming regulators and the MGA formed part of the panel entitled ‘Regulatory approaches to the demand and supply of online gambling’ together with six other regulators to share regulatory experiences. The representatives present then proceeded to signing the cooperation arrangement as a sign of endorsement. Dr Edwina Licari, Chief Officer – Legal & EU/International Affairs represented the MGA on the panel and signed the agreement on Malta’s behalf.

The MGA’s Executive Chairman Joseph Cuschieri welcomed today’s signing of the administrative cooperation arrangement (see link) with other EU/EEA gambling authorities during today’s special meeting held in Brussels and augurs that this shall be a stepping stone towards constructive information sharing, alignment and embracing of innovation while adopting a best practice approach towards regulation. “This agreement is a result of various discussions and debates between the various national gaming authorities and credit goes to the officials working in DG-GROW as well as to the representative officials of the various regulatory bodies who collectively worked towards this significant multilateral achievement.”

This agreement aims to institutionalise and structure the ongoing cooperation between the competent authorities of EU/EEA member states relating to the exchange of information and best practices, as well as to reduce unnecessary administrative burdens in gaming related matters. The MGA believes that in order to achieve results, clear objectives need to be set in order to keep up with this dynamic and fast moving industry. The MGA hopes that such an agreement would facilitate communication in order to embrace the subject of online gambling services objectively, as a regulated offer irrespective of the country of consumption or supply. The message transmitted through such cooperation and the value that may ensue is the link between independent authorities all working towards the same objectives within the respective political and governmental ambits albeit diverse legal and regulatory gaming frameworks.

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