Blockchain is changing Canada's gambling regulation

Blockchain is changing Canada's gambling regulation

By Giorgi Mikhelidze | InsideTrade | 14 Jan 2021

Blockchain technology continues to spread all over the world. Most of the industries today are switching to digital technologies and the gambling industry is among them. Online gambling is already very popular in almost every corner of the world. But now there is a growing tendency of adding cryptocurrencies to gambling services because of so many advantages it can bring. Several governments and regulators have already realized that blockchain technology can boost the entire gambling industry of their countries. This is exactly what happens in the iGaming scene of Canada. The number of players that take part in crypto-focused casinos quickly rises in this county and this is why it’s believed that sooner or later, blockchain will change Canada’s gambling regulation. 

iGaming landscape in Canada 

No wonder that gambling is very popular in Canada. Actually, it’s one of the main forms of entertainment. However, the regulations about gambling activities are not very clear and this is why it’s a little bit difficult to determine how popular are Canadian casinos compared to other casinos. However, looking at the website traffic of various gambling sites in Canada, we can certainly say that online gambling is quite popular in this country and is on its way to flourish. 

There was a time when all kinds of gambling activities were completely banned in Canada. But the laws changed afterward and now some Canadian states are allowed to run gambling venues without any interference from the government. Even though online gambling is still considered illegal, Canadian online casinos have so many customers, and the main reason for this can be the fact that they are trying hard to get involved in crypto gambling. Nowadays many forms of land-based gambling are legalized in the country. But the online gambling industry seems to be attracting even more customers compared to land-based casinos, and this can be attributed to blockchain technology. However, the iGaming landscape in this country is not regulated very clearly. 

Rise of crypto gambling in Canada 

Blockchain technology is widely used in Canada. In fact, according to Canadian Blockchain Census 2019, major research about blockchain technology in the country, blockchain-based services make 34% of the entire Canadian ecosystem. Among these services, entertainment, including gambling services is 9%. This means that crypto gambling is increasingly popular in this country. Probably, the main reason for this kind of popularity of blockchain gambling in Canada is the nature of cryptos itself. By using Bitcoin or other cryptos, no third party can get involved in the transactions players make. When it comes to online gambling, players usually worry about their confidential status, but with cryptos, the degree of their anonymity is higher than with regular gambling. 

Canadian online casinos acknowledge the fact that customers usually choose those casinos where banks or the government can’t track their transactions and as a result, they often choose crypto casinos. This is why as we can see, the major Canadian casino sites hurry to add BTC to their service and meet the needs of their players. Currently, players can already find lots of Canadian Bitcoin gambling sites where Bitcoin is the main payment method. On these sites, users can take part in various BTC games, get bonuses in this digital currency, and enjoy lots of other BTC services. 

Another reason why blockchain technology has so much impact on Canadian gambling sites is gambling regulation. According to Canadian jurisdiction, local casinos don’t have permission to operate in fiat and offer fiat currency gambling services to Canadian residents. Due to this law, they are mainly focused on foreign players and Canadian players use offshore websites in order to take part in gambling activities. This law is a little bit weird because Canadian players still find ways to play online on foreign websites and also, Canadian casinos still gain foreign customers. But some other countries, like Australia or New Zealand, have similar laws. 

But now it seems like Canadian casinos decided to focus on local customers as well and add cryptos to their service. Cryptocurrency regulation also exists in this country but nothing is clearly said in the jurisdiction that casinos are not permitted to offer crypto services on their platform. The only thing that is explicitly written on the law is that cryptocurrencies are primarily regulated under securities laws in Canada. But this doesn’t prevent local casinos from running services in BTC and other cryptos. 

Will blockchain change gambling-related laws in Canada?

Now as the authorities acknowledge that several local gambling sites are adding cryptos on their platform, they may start to think about revising gambling-related regulation. Nothing is certainly written in the jurisdiction about crypto gambling and therefore, regulators can’t blame local casinos for violating rules for introducing crypto gambling on their platforms. However, if they decide to make the law stricter and prohibit cryptocurrency gambling, probably these Canadian casinos will face severe challenges. But on the contrary, things may change for good.

Currently, the leading gambling industries allow crypto gambling because players all over the world frequently search for Bitcoin gambling sites. The same tendency can be noticed towards Canadian players. Transactions made with cryptos are very convenient as cryptos instantly appear on the digital account. Besides, there are no commission fees for cryptos and as a result, the majority of gamblers choose cryptos over fiat money. Now as the government sees that Canadians are looking for foreign websites in order to gamble with cryptos, rumors were raised that they may revise gambling-related law and allow local players to take part in crypto gambling on Canadian casinos. 

Generally, Canada is often referred to as one of the most crypto-friendly countries in the world. The fact that gambling regulation is not clear in the country makes it the best destination for offshore gamblers. However, local players find difficulties sometimes. But it seems like authorities realize that the crypto industry and gaming industry fit each other very well. So, if blockchain technology will be officially allowed on gambling sites, then cryptocurrencies will have a big impact on the Canadian iGaming landscape. While nothing can be certainly said at the moment, gambling-related regulation may change in the future and cryptocurrency gambling may be officially allowed for Canadian players.

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Giorgi Mikhelidze
Giorgi Mikhelidze

I'm a beginner software engineer from Georgia, one of the world's largest crypto mining countries. I have exclusive insight in the Georgian blockchain scene.


On this blog, we want to provide as much technical information about the blockchain as possible and discuss various ways this technology can be regulated in different countries. You will also find cryptocurrency comparisons to traditional markets and overall discussion about trading similarities and differences between things like stocks or Forex and cryptos.

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