The tiny peninsula of Gibraltar is teeming with internet gaming companies these days, all using registered addresses there to run sites that feed into the UK. There are many Gibraltar licensed bingo sites and the reasons for this are simple:
Firstly, Gibraltar is a tax haven, so companies operating from there can avoid having to pay UK betting tax, which is extremely punitive and has forced virtually all UK betting outfits offshore where possible. Obviously UK betting shops have to be physically located in the UK to do business, so household names like William Hill and Ladbrokes will still have to pay a certain amount of tax in order to operate - but when it come to their online gaming businesses, these companies and 99% of all other online operators based themselves in tax havens, with their servers set up abroad but still accessible by the UK public via the web.
However, whilst the freedom of the web allows UK players to gamble using sites registered anywhere, the UK gaming regulatory authorities have specified a number of jurisdictions that they consider offer player protection that’s at least as good as that offered in the UK. These places constitute what’s known as the UK Whitelist, and consist of the following:
- Any EEA country
- The Isle of Man
Gibraltar most popular
Of these, Gibraltar is by far and away the most popular as it’s not too far from the UK, is populated by English-speakers and offers particularly good tax breaks. You’ll find some well-known UK gaming outfits there, like William Hill and Ladbrokes –both with their own bingo sites of course - and dozens of other casino and bingo sites as well: For example, Cassava Enterprises - the Gibraltar arm of 888 Holdings - are based there so any site that’s on the Dragonfish network will be licensed by the Gibraltar Gambling Commission.
Gibraltar issued its first online gaming licenses in 1998 and the province’s original Gaming Act of 1958 was eventually updated in 2005 to reflect the nature of the online business that were flocking there. The Gibraltar Regulatory Authority is today considered to be one of the most unbiased and ethical bodies of its kind in the world, and obtaining a bingo licence from them is no mean feat.
Operators will firstly need the thumbs up from one of the following approved testers:
- Technical Systems Testing
- iTech Labs Australia
- Gaming Associates Pty Ltd
- Gaming Laboratories International Europe BV
It doesn’t stop at the software, though, with senior management of each operator closely scrutinised and ongoing checks made after the license is issued. Apart from the aforementioned UK sportsbook operators the following notable operators of online bingo sites are also based in Gibraltar:
Whilst plenty of other bingo sites are based in Malta and a handful in Alderney or the Isle of Man, Gibraltar looks to be unassailable as the location of choice for UK online bingo operators for the foreseeable future.
Gibraltar Licensed Bingo Sites
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