Buenos Aires Online Gambling at Risk in Upcoming General Election

  • First round of voting begins on October 27
  • An election primary and current polls suggest that the left-leaning coalition will take power
  • Tender process for seven online gambling licenses is on hold until the results are in
Wooden background with a flag of Argentina.
The tender process for seven online gambling licenses in Buenos Aires has been put on hold until after the country’s general election. [Image: Shutterstock]

Tender process frozen

An election primary in Buenos Aires suggests that the nation could shift politically to the left in the upcoming general election, which would not be good for online gambling in the city.

A tender process for seven available online gambling licenses in the Province of Buenos Aires is currently ongoing. However, this process has now been put on hold until after the country’s general election.

nation could shift politically to the left in the upcoming general election

Voters will cast their votes to elect their next government, with the first round of voting set to take place on October 27.

Potential political change

Taking into account the results of an election primary in August and the current polling figures, these figures indicate that a coalition party called Frente de Todos will come out on top.

The party’s government leader would then be in charge of issuing the online gambling licenses, changing the legislation, or completely stopping the online gambling tender process.

Gambling expansion has always been a controversial topic in Argentina. Socialist governments have traditionally been against such expansion in the country. However, the potential revenues from legal online gambling would be significant for the region.

Effort to expand

It was in April 2019 that the current Governor of Buenos Aires, Maria Eugenia Vidal, signed the Decree 181/19 into law. This made online gambling legal in the province. Sports betting, poker, slots, and casino games are now all allowed.

operators will pay a 25% tax rate on all revenues

The Buenos Aires Provincial Institute of Lottery and Casinos is to be the overseer of the regulations for the sector. As part of the legislation, operators will pay a 25% tax rate on all revenues. In the original bill, this rate was set higher at 15%.

There are also strict guidelines on the types of advertising gambling operators can do in the province. Each operator that receives a license is required to have a comprehensive responsible gambling strategy in place.

Significant interest

With the capital province legalizing gambling, other provinces in Argentina are beginning to follow suit.

Some of the major gambling companies that applied for one of the seven licenses include Paddy Power Betfair, Bet365, William Hill, 888 Holdings, and the Stars Group.

A number of these major global gambling companies partnered with local retail operations to boost their chances of securing one of the seven licenses. 

There is a lot of potential in the Latin America gambling market. There has been significant growth in gambling revenues in the region and this is set to continue for some time, according to an industry report.