The British Columbia Lottery Corporation is expecting the legalization of single-event sports betting within Canada’s borders, as this significant step would alter Canadians’ perception of gambling. The Crown corporation recently issued its own position on the subject, shedding more light on Bill C-218’s prospects of approval.
After the temporary suspension of in-person gambling on a provincial scale in March 2020, British Columbia has been working to modernize its online gaming offerings. Over the last year, brick-and-mortar casinos and gambling venues throughout the province have remained closed, reducing the amount of gambling revenue support casino operators can provide to the province.
The British Columbia Lottery Corporation has been working to develop its online gaming platform by introducing some wagering options, especially for big events and novelty bets. In a letter to the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights, it has now disclosed its position on the legalization of single-event sports betting. The subject was discussed by Stewart Groumoutis, Director of eGaming Operations, and Dr. Jamie Wiebe, Director of Player Health.
The Safe and Controlled Sports Betting Act is widely regarded as the long-awaited revolution in Canada’s wagering field.
The Crown corporation stated that this act would give players the right to place bets while also ensuring that they are protected and treated fairly at all times. If Bill C-218 receives official approval, it would allow more patrons to place bets legally rather than through illegal sportsbooks.
The Crown corporation makes it clear in the letter that players are already doing so in Washington State casinos or on unregulated off-shore websites, with none of the money eventually remaining within Canadian borders. Over the course of five years, CA$250 million was lost to such grey-market gambling hotspots.
The benefits of the British Columbia Lottery Corporation’s PlayNow.com platform was highlighted, which could launch single-event sports betting as soon as it is legalized. Furthermore, the Crown corporation emphasized the importance of single-event sports betting’s place in the context of traditional casino locations and gambling venues. Following a collaboration with regulators and government partners, sportsbooks could be launched there.
Bars and restaurants in British Columbia may benefit from enhanced sports betting offerings. Only after the introduction of single-event sports betting, which will provide much-needed revenue support, will the province raise up to CA$175 million.
Meanwhile, with the approval of the entire gaming industry, official legalization of the bill seems inevitable now.
Ontario Racing is the most recent gaming leader to join the support wave.
The Horsemen’s Benevolent Protective Association of Ontario, Woodbine Entertainment, Racetracks of Canada, Quebec Jockey Club, all expressed gratitude to the House of Commons’ Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights for the opportunity that legalization would offer for the sector and the entire gambling industry.