Regulatory Scope

Regulatory Scope

Regulatory Scope

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For the land based casino industry the Curaçao Gaming Control Board has the following regulatory responsibilities:

  • Licensing
  • Supervision and enforcement, incl. player protection
  • Collection of license fees
  • AML/CFT supervision
  • Promotion of responsible gaming

For the lottery industry, the GCB has the authority to issue, revoke and suspend licenses as well as to make changes to the license requirements.

The GCB is also the responsible institution for the issuance of licenses for gaming events with a charitable, social or cultural objective, specifically the lottery of goods, bingo and ‘bon ku ne’.

The draft legislation that will expand the regulatory tasks of the GCB to all gaming sectors is currently in the legislative process.

As of February 15, 2019, the GCB is the AML/CFT supervisor for all gaming sectors operational in and from Curaçao.

Offering gaming without a valid license in or from Curaçao is a felony in accordance with the Criminal Code (Wetboek van Strafrecht), punishable with imprisonment for a period of up to two (2) years or a fine of NAf 25,000 and/or revocation of certain rights.

The licensing process is a reflection of one of our primary responsibilities, the prevention of infiltration by criminal elements, including money launderers and financiers of terrorism in our casino and lottery industry. We perform, amongst others, probity checks up to the ultimate beneficiary owners (UBOs) through internal tools and with the help of several of our partners, as part of our assessment if an applicant is fit and proper to hold a Curaçao casino or lottery license.

Our fit-and-proper test also includes the availability of the expertise, planning and appropriate (sources of) funding to position the gaming activity to be successful.

The GCB is responsible for the enforcement of compliance with casino legislation and regulation. Non-compliance with relevant legislation and regulation may result in sanctions, that in severity vary from instructions to fines to temporary or permanent revocation of the casino license.

With the impending finalization of the legislative process to appoint a unified gaming regulator for Curaçao the GCB will obtain the necessary enforcement powers to enforce compliance with laws and regulations.

The Curaçao Gaming Control Board is responsible for the collection of the license fee pursuant to the National Ordinance Casino Sector Curaçao.

The GCB is the supervisor of compliance of the gaming industry with legislation and regulation pertaining to anti-money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism. To this regard the GCB issues AML/CFT regulation and guidelines, periodically performs AML/CFT compliance audits, enforces compliance, and provides AML/CFT training opportunities for the gaming sector.

The Curaçao AML/CTF-legislation defines the circumstances that indicate whether a transaction must be deemed unusual. These circumstances are referred to as ”indicators”. Unusual transactions must be reported to the Curaçao Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU Curaçao). This applies to executed transactions as well as proposed transactions. FIU Curaçao determines if the reported transaction should also be categorized as a suspicious transaction.

A transaction is deemed unusual if one or more indicators apply. Indicators can be objective or subjective.

Subjective indicators are dependent on the opinion of the service provider. If he believes that the circumstances surrounding the transaction coincide with those described in the indicator, the transaction is unusual and reporting is mandatory.

Objective indicators are not open to interpretation and rely on hard facts, for instance whether the lower limit for the transaction amount is exceeded, if a client’s name appears on certain lists, or whether the transaction has been reported to the police in connection with money laundering. When an objective indicator applies, the transaction must be deemed unusual and reported to the FIU.

For the casino sector, the lottery sector and providers of internet gambling, Curaçao AML-regulation, The Decree Indicators Unusual Transactions [“Regeling Indicatoren Ongebruikelijke Transacties“ (PB 2015, no. 73), Annex F] has set three (3) objective indicators and one (1) subjective indicator. In addition to these indicators, the GCB can issue guidelines, indicating red flag-situations pertinent to the gaming business.

For the casino sector, the lottery sector and providers of internet gambling, the following indicators apply at the transactional level:

Objective indicators:

• A transaction that is reported to the police or the judicial authorities in connection with money laundering or the financing of terrorism.
• A proposed transaction by or for the benefit of a natural person, legal person, group or entity, whose name appears on a list that has been drawn up pursuant to the Sanctions National Ordinance.
• A transaction of the value of NAf 5,000 or more (or its equivalent in foreign currency), regardless of the method of payment, be it cash, by check or other form of payment, or electronically or by another non-physical way. This includes amongst others:

1. a transfer from the bank account of the service provider to a local or international bank account at the request of the client;
2. taking funds in deposit or releasing funds held in deposit at the request of a client;
3. Selling tokens (which includes chips and credits) to a client; and
4. Pay-out of prize money.

Subjective indicators:

Transactions that give reason to assume they could be related to money laundering or to the financing of terrorism.

The promotion of responsible gaming and minimizing the risks of gambling addiction in the Curaçao casino industry is an important task of the GCB. We are working together with Fundashon pa Maneho di Adikshon (FMA), the organization that is focused on combating all forms of addiction on Curaçao.

For the casino industry a self-exclusion program is available for problem gamblers. This program offers the problem gambler the opportunity to exclude him or herself from visiting any landbased casino on Curaçao and get professional help at the same time. This program is enforced through a combined effort between the GCB and the casino industry. Problem gamblers can sign up to be included in the Self-exclusion Database at the offices of the GCB or FMA. This database is accessible to specific casino personnel.

The GCB also issued Responsible Gaming Guidelines for the casino industry that form an integral part of the casino license requirements.

Professional treatment of gambling addiction is available at FMA.