Coljuegos to Redefine Colombia's Slot Machine Rules in 2024

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Colombia's Federal Gambling Authority, Coljuegos, has announced its plans to embark on a regulatory project that will lead to significant changes in the rules regarding the ownership and operation of electronic slot machines (ESMs).

The initiative, scheduled to start in 2024, aims to eradicate the presence of unauthorized ESMs operating in all 32 federal jurisdictions across Colombia.

The regulator has launched a ‘public comment period’ to allow stakeholders and other interested parties to submit feedback on the initial proposals before implementation next year. The consultation period will last until December 14.

Related: Colombian Gaming Regulator Oversees Gambling Advert Restrictions

Large Illegal ESMs Market Share

Coljuegos states that the project's goal is to foster "territorial development” by substituting illegal economies with legal ones, taking into account the “productive capacities of the intervened areas."

According to the authority’s estimates, 50,000 illegal machines are operating across Colombian territories, with a market value of up to COP 945 billion (€220 million). This represents around 34% of the entire ESM market size. Coljuegos asserted that these operations are resulting in substantial financial losses for the state.

Certification and New Standards

The project's initial guidelines mandate all establishments running ESMs to certify their business status with Coljuegos. The authority intends to establish new standards for land-based casinos and gambling venues operating ESMs that incorporate legality, the principle of opportunity and the promotion of peace.

As the project progresses, Coljuegos will release the timetable, protocols, and financial requirements for operators looking to manage licensed ESMs.

The regulator had earlier suggested limiting the number of machines to 80 per operator, with the specific number to be based on the venue's size and the local area. The project also details the tender's duration, certification for gaming machines, prize restrictions, and the identification of technology providers.

“It is imperative that companies wishing to collaborate with Coljuegos comply with this condition to guarantee equity and trust in the selection procedures.” Coljuegos stated.

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