Andorra: Gambling Regulation Announced

The authorities from Andorra, a small country located in the Pyrenees -between France and Spain-, have publicly announced their intention to launch a newly regulated framework for the operation of offline and online gambling activities.

Pursuant to the draft version of the bill that the Andorran government has published, this new regulatory framework would open the door to the operation of gambling activities in that country (activities that had been forbidden since the nineteenth century). Hence, once the new regime is approved a new system of licenses for the operation of land-based and online gambling activities will be available for Andorran and foreign companies.

The general principle on which the new regime is going to be based will be that only regulated games will be available for operation in Andorra. Nonetheless, pursuant to the draft bill published by the Andorran authorities, the catalogue of games is going to be really wide, covering sport and horse-racing betting, casino games, poker, bingo as well as raffles and the distribution of foreign lottery (namely, Spanish lotteries).

In regards of land-based gambling activities, the most remarkable feature will likely be the opening of a casino. This is going to be the only place where, apart from the typical games (roulette, black jack, baccarat, etc.), slot and video-poker machines will be available.

In regards of online gambling, the authorities are keen to approve a licensing system that should allow operators seated in Andorra being entitled to operate both local and global gambling activities. No major detail has been provided at this respect, but it seems that the Andorran authorities are trying to set up a regulatory regime that may attract operators aiming at operating global international platforms.

Finally, a specific system of authorizations is going to be set up in order to allow the distribution of Spanish lottery tickets. Actually, such a distribution is widespread in Andorra and, therefore, this system would just be regulating an existing reality.

There are still a number of very sensitive issues to be defined (such as, for example, the applicable tax regime) but it seems that the Andorran authorities do not want to lose the regulatory path that is being followed by a great number of jurisdictions in Europe.