Canada will have sportsbooks in 2021

  • Canada has amended their Criminal Code with the passage of Bill C-218 on Tuesday that will allow provinces to open sportsbooks in both retail and mobile platforms.
  • The handle from sports wagering in a regulated Canadian market is expected to be at least $500 million annually.
  • Sportsbooks will begin opening up in Canada before the end of 2021.

OTTAWA – The Senate of Canada passed Bill C-218 on Tuesday to amend the Criminal Code in the country and allow for sports betting.

The Safe and Regulated Sports Betting Act is the name of the measure that found passage by a majority vote of 57 YEAS and 20 NAYS in the Senate.

Earlier in the year, Parliament approved the bill that was then sent to the Senate for consideration. C-218 will now go to Richard Wagner, the Chief Justice of Canada for his royal assent into law. Insiders say that Wagner will approve the proposal, as it’s just a formality that is a part of the legislative process.

“This is a major milestone and achievement for the Canadian gaming industry,” said Paul Burns, President and CEO of the Canadian Gaming Association (CGA).

“The CGA has been working to legalize single-event sports betting for more than 10 years and Bill C-218 benefited from a groundswell of broad stakeholder support from across Canada. The need for regulation, oversight, player protection, and the creation of economic benefits for Canada was understood by everyone involved in the legislative process, which is why the Bill was successfully passed.”

What’s Next For Regulated Sports Betting In Canada?

Regulated sports betting in Canada expects to see at least 38 million participants when an industry goes live. As with the United States, Canadian sports wagering will be taking place on a province-to-province basis the way the U.S. runs their market on a state-to-state basis. All of the well-known provinces which have large tourism markets like Ontario are already looking toward adding sportsbooks to their menu of attractions for visitors to enjoy.

Both retail and mobile sportsbooks are eligible to be launched within the industry. Interested parties are looking toward going live with sports wagering platforms in 2021. The sports gaming market for the country projects to see $500 million in handle annually, although it’s been said that Canadians have wagered as much as $14.5 billion in a year with the use of outside outlets, prior to these new regulations.

A Good Day For Canada

Canada sports betting has been something that all of the professional sports teams of the country have been backing for some time now. Numerous operators would like to branch out into its new sports gaming market and offer their betting lines to Canadians in all of the provinces that will eventually regulate their own industries. After its final approval, sports wagering will become law in Canada and sportsbooks can begin rolling out before the year ends.

“The serious and thoughtful consideration of Bill C-218 by Senators and Members of Parliament will dramatically improve the ability to offer sports betting in Canada and provide an important competitive tool for an industry that has been severely impacted by COVID-19 shutdowns,” said Carrie Kormos, Chair of the CGA.

Canadians can expect to see local sportsbooks opening up country-wide before 2022.

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