The new Curaçao gambling law, the National Gaming Ordinance (LOK), is expected to be introduced in mid-2024. Reno Saleh shared this during the presentation he gave to stakeholders in Curaçao. Minister Silvania presented his draft law to the Advisory Council in June, but is still waiting for its opinion.
During the seminar in Curaçao in which details were shared about the National Gaming Regulation (LOK), it was also indicated that the new gambling law will not be introduced until mid-2024.
The implementation planning has previously been adjusted several times. According to the latest reports, the introduction was planned for the last quarter of 2023, but that date now appears not to be met. In June, the Curaçao newspaper Amigoe reported that Minister Silvania even assumed that the LOK would be introduced this month at the latest. In June, the draft law was presented to the Advisory Council and urgent advice was requested. The minister requested this so that the law could be introduced within two months.
Licensing process starts in September 2023
Even though it will take almost a year before the National Ordinance on Gambling will be introduced, a licensing procedure will start from September 1, 2023. From that date, interested parties can register in a register of the Gaming Control Board (GCB). At that time, they can submit an application for a temporary permit under the current gambling law, the National Ordinance Offshore Hazard Games (LBH).
By first having the parties register in the register, Curaçao hopes to gain more insight into the number of sublicensees. However, the Gaming Control Board does not get a complete picture, because it is not mandatory for current sublicensees to register. If they do not apply for a license under the current Gambling Act and do not intend to apply for a new license under the LOK, they can continue to operate an online casino under the current sublicense for the time being.
New online gaming permits Curacao
The permits that are issued are initially for six months. However, Reno Saleh already announced that there is a possibility that these licenses could be extended for another six months. The issuing of temporary licenses will proceed quickly, because the GCB must process the applications within two months.
Once the draft law has been advised by the Advisory Council, Minister Silvania can proceed to drawing up the final version of the LOK. The minister hopes to introduce this final version as soon as possible. He previously stated that rapid implementation is a priority, because Curaçao will then benefit from the new law more quickly.
The reform of the online gambling policy in Curaçao was first discussed in November 2020. The reforms were one of the conditions that the Dutch government imposed if Curaçao wanted to receive corona support from the Netherlands.