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Canada is one step closer to legal single-event sports wagering

The House of Commons has passed Bill C-218, a major step in the legalisation of single-game sports betting in Canada. The legislation now moves on to the Senate for reading and adoption.

The third time may be the charm

Bill C-128 has been approved on Thursday by the Canadian House of Common,  following passage at its second reading in February.

This bill, also known as the Safe and Regulated Sports Betting Act, encompasses the single-event gambling process and discusses the nature of wagering on single-event games. It now moves to the Senate for further discussions with the expectation that it will be passed into law.

The Canadian Criminal Code currently states that sports betting is only legal if players bet simultaneously on at least three games or more, meaning consumers are not able to legally bet on single games – of football, hockey, and other sports except for horse racing – events or matches.

Let’s remind that such legislation had garnered enthusiasm twice in the past and had even made it through the house of Commons before burning out. The third time may be the charm.

Impatience

The support and impatience for this bill to become a law is palpable in the country.

So far, the bill received support from the Canadian government, from the British Columbia Lottery Corporation as well as from a host of international leading sports and gambling organisation.

Chief Executive of Media business theScore John Levy said: “This development is a major step forward and we are increasingly encouraged by the widespread industry and strong cross-party support that Bill C-218 has garnered […] now that Bill C-218 has been passed by the House, we look forward to the Senate swiftly carrying the ball over the goal line”.

theScore estimates a market potential for online gaming in Canada of between US$3.8 billion (£2.7 bn) and US$5.4 billion (£3.9 bn) in annual gross gaming revenue.

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