Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) Licensed Casinos & Bonuses
Established in 2001, the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) is the regulatory body for almost all forms of gambling that falls under its jurisdiction. This includes land-based locations such as casinos, amusement arcades, betting offices and lotteries as well as online gambling including business-to-customer (B2C) and business-to-business (B2B) services.
Foreseeing the rapid growth in online gaming and betting, the MGA became one of the first to regulate the activity of online gambling operators and more importantly offer players a secure environment. It all started with the 2001 Lotteries and Other Games Act which has since been complemented by anti-money laundering, responsible gambling and crime protection directives.
With Malta being part of the European Union, it allowed the MGA to offer its gaming licences in any European country and thus creating a vast regulated market with over 500 million people. This was especially important for online casinos as they take players from virtually any country that is not prohibiting online gambling. Also, players from some monopoly countries (Finland) are allowed to play at the MGA- casinos. The sector has become a vital part of Malta’s economy, presently representing more than 10% of its GDP.
Today, the MGA is much more than just a licence issuing body and has taken on an important role in protecting minors and vulnerable players, curbing illicit gambling and preventing money laundering. Below is just a small selection of their activities.
- Provide a one-stop-shop for licensing
- Protect minors and vulnerable persons and safeguarding players’ rights
- Promote responsible gaming in a safe environment
- Ensure the integrity of games and gaming devices
- Collecting gaming taxes on behalf of the Government
- Support the industry and technological innovation
For players, this means in clear words that signing up at a casino with an MGA licence will provide a secure atmosphere where they can enjoy their online gaming and sports betting. Clear rules and regulations ensure that operators adhere to a strict code of conduct in a regulated environment and players will be treated fairly in disputes.
The MGA will also act as a dispute resolution body where players can lodge their complaint against a casino or gaming operator if they fail to resolve the issue directly with the operator’s support or management.
In 2014, the Malta Gambling Authority commenced three support projects to combat the effects of harmful gambling and help keep licencing in players’ interests. The Responsible Gaming Foundation, European Gaming Institute of Malta and GamingMalta are on hand to support players, the gaming industry and the MGA.
For 2020, the MGA furthered their mission with the Responsible Gaming Audit, intended to look closer at player protection compliance laid out in the regulations. This audit delves into player-casino relationships, marketing and such interactions, the effectiveness of responsible gambling tools and the overall player experience.
The current responsible gambling approach identifies vulnerable players early on and takes steps to avoid gambling harm proactively. With MGA casinos, you can be certain of tools for limiting your time and spending when you complete registration, with immediate prompts for settings. You may set daily, weekly, monthly limits along with timely pop-up reminders. Should you need support, time-outs and self-exclusion periods are ready to go at the touch of a button, along with professional guidance and support from both casino and the Malta Gambling Authority.
For players from Finland: visit SuomenNettikasinot.com – information about online casinos in Finland, in Finnish.
- 1. Is the MGA Malta a government agency?
- 2. How hard is it to get a gaming licence from the MGA?
- 3. How do the Malta Gambling Authority protect players?
- 4. How do the MGA check what online casinos do?
- 5. What happens if an MGA licenced online casino fails a compliance audit?
- 6. How long do the MGA grant licences for?
- 7. How many licences do the MGA issue each year?
- 8. Is my money safe with an MGA licenced online casino?
- 9. Can I get direct help from the Malta Gambling Authority as an online casino player or help with problem gambling?
- 10. Where can I find out more about the Malta Gambling Authority and MGA licenced online casinos?