BY JOEY CORMIER
An estimated $90 million will leave Atlantic Canada and go to offshore gambling websites in 2017 (Re: series of articles on online gambling published over the holidays in several Saltwire network publications including this one). These offshore companies do not pay local taxes, contribute no profit to our provincial governments, create no local jobs and do not purchase local products and services.
The online gambling industry is not slowing down. Revenues for offshore sites are predicted to grow by 80 per cent over the next five years. By 2022, an estimated $162 million will be spent by Atlantic Canadians on offshore gambling websites.
The fact is, Atlantic Lottery is the only authorized provider of internet gambling in Atlantic Canada. Most Atlantic Canadians are not aware that offshore gambling sites operate illegally in our region, without any regulatory oversight by local government agencies.
Atlantic Lottery has been selling products online since 2004, including lottery games, bingo, instant win games and parlay sports betting. To help combat the black market, several Canadian provinces have also successfully introduced regulated, legal casino and poker options online. As a result, over 75 per cent of Canadians now have access to a regulated internet casino in their province.
Atlantic Lottery feels that the case to regulate internet casino in our region is becoming more compelling every year. Atlantic Canadians deserve a safe, legal alternative for all of their online gambling entertainment.
Atlantic Lottery takes responsible gambling seriously. When responsible practices are in place, online gambling can offer options to help players responsibly manage their play and make informed choices.
Atlantic Lottery exists to fund crucial services like hospitals, schools and roads. We have two jobs: provide Atlantic Canadian adults with government-regulated and responsible lottery products, and return 100 per cent of profits from lottery sales to the four Atlantic Canadian governments. Atlantic Canadians have trusted us to do these jobs for the past 40 years and we have delivered.
- Joey Cormier, Director of Marketing, iLottery, Atlantic Lottery