Colombia to issue ‘at least two more’ licences in 2017

Juan B. Perez Hidalgo, president of Colombian gaming regulator Coljuegos, has revealed the organisation expects to award “at least two more” igaming licences by year's end


Juan B. Perez Hidalgo, president of Colombian gaming regulator Coljuegos, has revealed that the organisation expects to award “at least two more” online gaming licences before the end of the year.

Coljuegos has issued a number of licences in recent months as the Colombian market continues to expand after it became the first jurisdiction in the Latin America region to formally approve online gambling back in October 2016.

Speaking to iGaming Business about continuing efforts to enforce regulation in Colombia, Hidalgo said he is keen for more companies to obtain licences as a way of boosting not only local investment in the country, but also investment from abroad.

To read the full interview with  Juan B. Perez Hidalgo, see  the iGB News Analysis article (paywall)

In June of this year, secured the first licence under new national laws in the country. The company has since struck up a partnership with Quickfire to offer a range of content from Microgaming to punters in Colombia.

Corredor Empresarial has also rolled out, while GAMING1 and Vicca Group have launched, while domestic operator Colbet last month acquired its own online gambling licence.

The award of licences has come as Coljuegos and the Colombian government continue to work on clamping down on illegal gambling in the country, with ongoing efforts to stop unauthorised and unlicensed companies from operating in Colombia.

Hidalgo told iGaming Business that he welcomes applications from countries all over the world and Coljuegos has already held talks with variety of businesses.

Earlier this year, the government published a list of 325 online operators that were offering gambling services to Colombian punters without a licence.

Such has been the impact of the new licensing process that a number of major operators have withdrawn their services from the market so as not to breach new national laws.

In July, PokerStars announced it would close down its Colombia-facing site after it was included on the government blacklist of websites, but also said that it may look to apply for a licence in the future and return to the local market.

Hidalgo confirmed to iGaming Business that Coljuegos is in constant contact with various parties “interested in obtaining a licence to operate in Colombia” and although only four are currently licensed in the country, “several more” are on the way.

To read the full interview with Juan B. Perez Hidalgo, see the iGB News Analysis article (paywall)

Related articles: Colbet picks up online licence in Colombia GAMING1 picks up casino, sportsbook licence in Colombia Quickfire enters Colombia with PokerStars departs Colombian market Colombia regulator issues second online gaming licence