South Africa casino agreement echoes US standards
South Africa is set to become the first country outside of the US to adopt a gambling industry code of conduct, due in part to South Africa’s rapidly growing casino gambling sector. Representatives of the top land-based casinos in the country signed the agreement this week, from gambling groups such as Sun International, Gold Reef Casino Resorts, and Peermont Global. The hope would be that with the signing of such an agreement, the Casino Association of South Africa (CASA) would have an easier time ensuring fairness of gaming and business practices, promoting a culture of responsible gambling in the young democracy.
CASA represents the licensed casino industry in South Africa, where in a period of just eight years it has generated more than 12 billion rand (South Africa’s currency, or US $1.76 billion) in new casino location gambling investments in all of the nine provinces of South Africa, which in turn have added more than 36 billion rand (US $5.29 billion) to the GDP of the country. This agreement remains in stark contrast to the raid the gambling authority of South Africa recently carried out in conjunction with organized crime police in the country against illegally operated online casino businesses.
The US has strict protocols regulating the legal casino operations in the country, with gambling in such locations limited to certain states or cities (like the US state of Nevada, Las Vegas, Reno and others within Nevada along with Atlantic City in the US state of New Jersey) or Indian reservations, which rely on revenues from casino operations to pay for schooling and other necessities. Like South Africa, the US views online casino gambling operations to be illegal, but while there have been court cases finding in favor of the government’s view, there is no specific federal law which bans online casino gambling.