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New Curacao License for International Level Gaming

In 2023, the well-known Curacao gaming license will be updated. The island nation authorities face a mammoth task to keep their popular gaming license attractive for customers and ensure that it remains in line with ever more strict international standards. 

How will they achieve the goal? 

Curacao

When will the license be updated?

According to Mr. Silvania, Curacao Minister of Finance, the amendments will be introduced to the nation’s legislation in Q2, 2023. The Minister promises Curacao will remain an important market player in the online gaming industry. 

As of now, the country’s  Council of Ministers has adopted draft legislative amendments and sent them to SER (Social Economic Council) for approval. A RVA (Council of Advice) resolution and a parliamentary decision are required to put the above documents into effect.

The International Wealth experts believe it will take at least 6 months for the new Curacao gaming license to enter into force.

Although certain details may change in future, let’s analyze the amendments we know about at the moment.

New license types in Curacao

Curacao is about to cancel its previous master use and sub license system to substitute it with B2C and B2B licenses issued directly by the Government. Here’s what you should remember about the legislative innovation:

  • B2C license covers Operators.
  • B2B license covers payment service providers, platform providers, and game providers.

Real presence as an old new trend

Recently, multiple jurisdictions have tightened their requirements and standards for foreign investors demanding that the latter have real presence in their incorporation jurisdiction, especially for those investors engaged in licensed activities.

FYI: to obtain a Curacao Gambling License, you shall set up a local company in Curacao and see to it that it is fully functional. 

The main amendment deals with employee real presence in Curacao. For the moment, 1 key employee in Curacao is enough to meet the requirements, while the new rules provide for a company to have 3 or more key employees in Curacao. As an additional requirement, the company shall establish a physical office in Curacao and see to it that it is fully functional within 5 years since the law has come into force.

Key officials are deemed to be the company’s local director, local manager, local compliance officer and/or local operation officers.

The office itself shall be suitable for a gaming and/or gambling business. Startup companies may request an exemption from the above regulations. Yet, they are obliged to meet the minimum requirements in force at the moment.

Crypto payments and taxes

Curacao currently has no laws regulating crypto operations. Yet, new gaming license rules provide for cryptocurrency exchange till a new individual legal basis is worked out to deal with the issue.

To promote the growth of companies with real presence in Curacao, the local government comes with various tax initiatives. Say, the Investment Tax Incentive provides for a no-tax regime for the period of 10 years. 

A solution to cancel a sales tax for B2B companies is being worked out.

Curacao companies hiring highly-qualified foreign workers are free to apply for expatriate employment arrangements with lower salary tax rates.

License fees

No new price for a gambling license is known yet. Yet it is said to be competitive and affordable for both operators and service providers about to operate in Curacao.

Transition period

The Curacao government intends to keep their professional relationship with current customers, offering the latter an 18-month transition period after the new rules come into force. To be eligible therefor, you shall apply for a new license no later than 3 months before the amended legislation goes into effect. 

At International Wealth, we assume you still have time till the end of March to get your Curacao gaming license and now is high time to start working on it. To learn about the related procedures and requirements, you are welcome to book a consultation with the International Wealth experts at [email protected]

Feel free to apply remotely. The standard practice for the Curacao Gaming Authority (CGA) is to respond to requests it receives within 2 weeks and to resolve on whether to issue you the Curacao Gaming License within 8 to 12 weeks. CGA is authorized to grant standard licenses with a 5-year validity or provisional licenses with a 6-month validity that may be extended for 6 more months. The provisional license is issued where the applicant fails to meet insignificant requirements that can be easily met and they do so later. 

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