Online Gambling is popular throughout all of Canada and the number of online Canadian Casinos has grown significantly. It is estimated that over 70% of the country’s adult population is in the habit of indulging in gambling in some form or other.
A study by researchers at Concordia University and the University of Montreal surveyed 11,888 people in the Montreal area about their gambling habits, and found that 70 per cent of them had spent money in the previous year on lotteries, Slot Machines, video lottery terminals and poker. This data is consistent with a ‘Gambling in Canada Research Report’ that was funded by the Canada West Foundation back in February 2000.
Canadians love betting and lotteries but they adore Casino gambling, especially online. Online casino gambling is rapidly gaining over the land-based casinos in terms of popularity and growth. The global annual online gaming market has grown to become worth billions of dollars and Canadians online gambling contribute considerably. However, despite the fact that Canada houses many leading gaming software developers and is home to the Kahnawake Gaming Commission, the legal status of online gambling in the country still remains ambiguous.
The Canadian Criminal Code prohibited gambling in any form in 1892. In time, the perception as well as the government’s stance with regards to gambling changed and in 1969, the government relaxed the prohibition and allowed an exemption to gambling that was meant for charitable purposes..
The provincial governments established Gambling crown corporations to regulate the gambling activities. Quebec, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, British Columbia and Alberta created their own public entities and currently every province has established its own corporation to oversee and control online gambling activities such as wagering in poker, bingo and Casino Games. Officially, online gaming in Canada is illegal. But, the 1985 amendment to Canadian Criminal Code laid the groundwork for the legalization of online gambling in the country.
Complications in the jurisdiction rights with regards to Canadian gamblers playing in offshore based online casinos led the government to hand every province the right to regulate online gaming; and recognizing the revenue potential of online gambling the provincial governments softened their approach on the subject of its legalization. Manitoba recently joined the list of other such Canadian provinces by launching its own gambling website. There is a growing demand for the complete legalization of online gambling in Canada.