According to the Canadian Gaming Association (CGA), a bill which would legalize single-event sports wagering in Canada is to become a government bill.
Bill C-218, otherwise known as the Safe and Regulated Sports Betting Act, is set to be introduced in the House of Commons.
Commenting on the news, the CGA said it was “pleased that the federal government has recognised the urgent need to amend the Criminal Code to offer safeguards to Canadians as well as an economic recovery tool for the provinces.”
If the bill is passed, the CGA said it would provide Canada with the tools to provide safe and legal betting. The group also detailed the economic benefits of such a measure for licensed gaming operators, communities and local governments.
“We can’t emphasize enough how this small change to the Criminal Code will help communities recover from the economic devastations of the COVID-19 shutdown,” the CGA concluded.
Paul Burns, president and CEO of the CGA, has been consistently vocal about the need for a regulated single-event sports betting market in Canada.
Earlier this month, the executive said more than $4bn is wagered through offshore online sports wagering sites per year. In contrast, only $500m is wagered through legal sports lottery products currently offered to Canadians.