The Curacao e-Gaming Licensing Authority in the Netherlands Antilles was established in 1996 making it one of the oldest regulated e-gaming services providers. In 2002, online gaming became a central industry for Curacao with the decentralization of the regulation of online gaming from the Curacao Gaming Control Board. Netherlands Antilles gaming licenses are based on the National Ordinance on Offshore Hazard Games. Curacao and the Netherlands Antilles are associate members of the EU and are designated Overseas Country and Territory (OCT).
It also happens that the largest online gambling affiliate company, most well known as Pokerlistings, has their main offices and headquarters there. VIP.com and Casinocoins are two large corporations that operate out of Curacao in which I’ve had the opportunity to visit.
The Curacao Department of Justice has designated the Curacao eGaming Licensing Authority to be the master licensing authority in Curacao. Curacao offers one type of license which covers all games of skill, chance and sportsbetting; it also covers software providers and product operators. The company must have its physical primary operating servers outside of Curacao.
As a minimum, player information, game logic, and financial transactions must be operated on computer hardware situated within the Curacao e-zone. The Curacao eGaming Licensing Authority provides a large range of services, including the management of gaming licenses, hosting, and IT infrastructure. This reduces points for potential problems and makes it highly attractive for operators.
The e-zone tax regime is an appealing setting for international e-commerce operations. e-Commerce activities can be undertaken on computer hardware that’s located in the government e-zone. This results in many benefits including a net corporate income tax rate of only 2%, 0% tax on gross bets, no sales tax, no import duties, no VAT, and no restriction on dividend withdrawals.
All products that are licensed under the Curacao eGaming Licensing Authority must display the official license seal. This seal assures that the operation is in compliance with the jurisdiction’s e-gaming and e-zone legal requirements. It provides assurance that the software is in compliance with all jurisdiction requirements. It also assures that the minimum operations are operating from computer hardware located in the Curacao e-zone.
The CIGA (ciga.an) is dedicated entirely to internet gambling in Curacao. The CIGA strives to work on behalf of its members to represent them to local government and to provide a planning and coordinating voice for legislative, policy, legal, and communication efforts for the members. They ensure that their members comply with licensing requirements and conform to a code of conduct.
The Curacao eGaming Licensing Authority ensures that all CIGA members operate according to the gaming license provided by the Government of the Netherlands Antilles and assist with the development of customer service standards and consumer standards. They must maintain a full audit trail for every player who makes a deposit, including financial transactions and individual wagers. They must refuse wagers from residents of the Netherlands Antilles and those below the age of 18. They must provide for third party auditors all gaming systems including backend software logs. They must agree to be able to pay player winnings by maintaining minimum financial resources. Finally, they must avoid and prevent unethical marketing and advertising.