Skill Games

The Malta Gaming Authority’s purview includes skill games, although only skill games deemed to be controlled skill games by the Authority are subject to a licensing requirement as per the Gaming Authorisations Regulations (S.L. 583.05).

Skill games which, in the opinion of the Authority, should be subject to additional regulatory supervision because of any additional risk they may pose to consumers, may, by virtue of a public ruling issued by the Authority in terms of regulation 8, be deemed ‘controlled skill games’, and thus become subject to the requirement of a licence, and the rest of the obligations envisaged in the regulations.

Rulings issued with respect to controlled skill games may be found on the MGA website. For the sake of legal clarity, skill games which are not subject to such a ruling, are not subject to the requirement to acquire a controlled skill game licence.

Further details on the requirements for a controlled skill games licence can be found in the ‘Application Process’ section.

Background

The Malta Gaming Authority first started regulating games of skill with the publication of the Skill Games Regulations (S.L. 438.11) which came into force on the 24th of January 2017. Under this new framework, the Authority was entrusted with the governance and regulation over the skill games sector, as originally envisaged under article 78 of the Lotteries and Other Games Act (Chapter 438 of the Laws of Malta).

The publication of these regulations followed a public consultation that was carried out in 2015. The Authority collected and analysed the feedback received, and met with industry stakeholders, and a position paper was published in December 2015, laying down the Authority’s roadmap for the regulation of this sector. The legislative process was undertaken in 2016, which included notification to the European Commission in terms of the process laid down by Directive 2015/1535.

By virtue of the Skill Games Regulations, the Authority became empowered to regulate the sector in terms of a number of public policy objectives listed down in regulation 3, including consumer protection, fairness of the game, and the prevention of criminality. Controlled skill games were identified as being skill games which, according to the Authority, require additional regulatory supervision because of additional risks they pose to consumers. Operators of controlled skill games were required to acquire a licence in terms of the same regulations.

Rulings issued with respect to controlled skill games may be found on this page. For the sake of legal clarity, skill games which are not subject to such a ruling, are not subject to the requirement to acquire a controlled skill game licence, either in the capacity of engaging with end consumers, or to provide a supply in a business-to-business capacity.

Downloads

Title
Controlled Skilled Games Ruling