A Memorandum of Understanding (2010 MOU) has been signed between the Kahnawake Gaming Commission (KGC) and the Financial Services Regulatory Commission for Antigua and Barbuda (FSRC). The KGC operates out of the Kahnawake Mohawk Territory, a self-governing Native American reserve in Quebec. The group oversees and regulates online gambling sites in Canada which, incidentally, only target players outside of Canada. The FSRC licenses and regulates internet gambling sites hosted in Antigua and Barbuda, a twin-island Caribbean nation.
The agreement is a way to strengthen the relationship between the two regulatory commissions, and is designed to facilitate the exchange of information regarding their licensees. It also opens up new doors for license holders – gambling groups in possession of a license from one jurisdiction can now apply to receive “Inter-Jurisdictional Authorization”, which will allow them to be hosted in either location.
The 2010 MOU, which will formally come into effect in September, provides much-needed support to the Kahnawake Gaming Commission, which has been under constant attack from the Canadian government. Critics insist that the Kahnawake Mohawk Territory is not legally permitted to license online gambling sites, despite the fact that the Territory is autonomous, and not is bound by Canadian gambling laws. The KGC has been providing internet gambling licenses for more than 10 years now, but the attitude taken by the international gambling industry towards the KGC is not as strong as it could be.
The FSRC, on the other hand, enjoys much stronger support. The Commission has been on the UK’s “white list” of gambling jurisdictions for some time, giving it a strong position internationally. The KGC has been seeking “white list” status but has not yet had any luck. The 2010 MOU promises to strengthen the international position of the KGC, in a time when the online gambling industry is experiencing tremendous growth.