Revamping Peru’s Law on Remote Gaming: Resolving Criticisms and Eliminating Loopholes.
In August 2022, Law 31.557 was hurriedly accepted and implemented. However, industry stakeholders criticized it as a “Frankenstein” law for being a patchwork of provisions from different pre-existing bills. In response, Congress greenlit Bill no. 3595/2022 during a plenary assembly on May 25th, 2023. The draft aimed to clarify ambiguous concepts and define their scope. Notably, an amendment was made to Article 40 of the original law, which unintentionally created a loophole that allowed foreign companies to acquire licenses without paying the 11.76% revenue tax. The revised legislation now obliges both foreign and Peruvian companies to pay this tax.
We would like to announce recent changes to our policies, including an increased financial guarantee required for approved operators. To ensure compliance, the guarantee has been raised to either 600 Peruvian tax units (UITs) or 3 percent of the operator’s annual gross revenue, whichever is higher.
Furthermore, we are pleased to announce that the amended law now allows foreign residents and tourists to register and participate in gaming activities with Peruvian operators. We recognize that previous restrictions were unfair to our foreign players and are pleased to rectify this.
In addition, we have expanded the list of permitted domains for licensed online gambling operators to include dot.com, dot.com.pe, dot.pe, dot.bet, and dot.bet.pe. This amendment rectifies the previous restriction and addresses the concerns of opponents by allowing greater flexibility for operators.
Important Development: New Online Gambling Regulation in Peru Includes Criminal Penalties for Unlicensed Operators
Peru’s upcoming legislation to regulate online gambling will also lead to changes in the country’s Penal Code. This means that operating as an online operator without a licence could potentially result in criminal charges once the regulations are implemented.
The amendment to the Penal Code can be found in Article 243-C, with penalties ranging from one to four years of imprisonment.
Carlos Fonseca Sarmiento, a prominent gaming lawyer in Peru, has expressed concerns about the 120-day period between the publication of the regulatory decree and the actual enforcement of the law.
In a piece for Yogonet, a leading Spanish-language media outlet, Sarmiento expressed concern over the extension of the online gambling law’s transition period from 60 to 120 days. He believes this may not be enough time for grey market operators to transition legally, or for the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Tourism to manage the expected influx of license applications.
The next significant step towards regulating online gambling in Peru is for President Dina Boluarte to promulgate the legislation within 15 days. This action will officially put the amendments into effect and move the process forward.