Just a year after Argentina’s government threatened to block IP addresses of foreign online gambling sites, and to send any players who dared to use them off to jail, a change of heart seems to have swept over the nation’s decision makers. During the past few months, the government has begun drafting changes to Argentinean gambling laws that could legalize online gambling throughout the country. “We’re working so that this will become law within two or three months,” Presidential Cabinet Chief Anibal Fernandez stated back in August. Fernandez then added that the change could take up to two years.
Argentina’s Massive Bingo Market Aching to Move Online
Just a year after Argentina’s government threatened to block IP addresses of foreign online gambling sites, and to send any players who dared to use them off to jail, a change of heart seems to have swept over the nation’s decision makers.
Unfortunately, little news has come of this development as of early 2010, and gambling operators in the country are understandably anxious. The changes are being made in order to combat illegal gambling in Argentina, which has become increasingly problematic. After threats of IP blocks and jail time didn’t work, the government decided to take a more open approach.
Argentina is host to the largest gambling industry in Latin America. While football betting probably holds the honor as being the most popular form of gambling in the country, bingo is quickly catching up. Argentina’s bingo industry is fueled largely by a single operator by the name of CODERE, a Spanish group that has a strong presence throughout Latin America.
CODERE controls 14 of Argentina’s largest commercial bingo halls, including the impressive Bingo La Plata, which is the country’s largest. La Plata recently renewed its gambling license, and is now good to operate until 2021. This bingo hall, which looks as extravagant as a Las Vegas casino, generates more than 10% of CODERE’s revenues in Argentina.
CODERE is likely anxious to learn of the government’s decision regarding online gambling, and would probably welcome the opportunity to offer online bingo games in Argentina. Now that the government is showing signs of relaxing its grip on internet gambling in the country, players are freer to play online bingo at foreign online bingo sites, but the possibility of playing at locally-hosted and licensed online gambling sites in Argentina is definitely appealing.