Botswana is continuing with its plans to better regulate and grow its gambling market, releasing preliminary licence applications for betting, totalisators and gambling machines, as well as addressing public questions about their details.
The final version of the bookmaker and totalisator “RFA document” has been available to purchase since Monday (June 5) for BWP2,5000 (€171).
The request for approval (RFA) “is a guidance document that shall be used to provide information on the process and the information required from applicants to be assessed for the award to the successful operators”, the Gambling Authority explained.
The closing date to purchase the application document is July 7, 2023.
There will also be a compulsory “Applicants’ Conference” on July 20, 2023, according to the Gambling Authority’s announcement on June 2.
It follows a similar draft RFA document and call for public responses on gambling machines, which was launched on May 25.
Speaking with VIXIO GamblingCompliance at the ICE London expo in February, Peter Kesitilwe, acting CEO of the Gambling Authority, said he was keen for operators to apply for a licence that now allows for land-based and online betting, as “the government is losing out on taxes”.
Additionally, the government of Botswana’s annual budget of PULA60.30bn (€4.19m) for 2023/24 is a 13 percent increase from 2022/23, the highest budget increase over the last five years, leading the country to expedite its search for new revenue streams.
“Online betting is now legal, but there are unlicensed operators already active in the market. We want to encourage them to apply. It will improve player protection, increase taxes as well as contribute to responsible gambling developments. Operators need to apply and normalise being regulated,” Kesitilwe said.