Canada has seen the massive growth of sports betting in the United States, and it will be jumping on board at the end of this month. The official launch date has been announced as August 27, which will be just in time for Canada bettors to get in on the NFL regular season action.
David Lametti, Minister of Justice and Attorney General, made the announcement this week, and it was news that was celebrated with sports bettors in Canada. It has been nearly two months since Bill C-218 was passed by the Senate, and bettors have been anxiously awaiting a launch date.
Bill C-218 has given the power to each province to determine how they plan to proceed with single-game wagering. Similar to the United States, each region of Canada will set up different sports betting rules that will govern the industry.
Professional sports teams and sportsbook operators in the United States have helped to get single-game wagering in Canada approved. These leagues and operators will now take aim at Canada to look for new revenue sources.
A Decade Long Battle
This isn’t the first time that there has been a push for single-game wagering in Canada, and this battle has actually been going on for nearly a decade. The first attempt was made all the way back in 2011, but those efforts ended quickly.
Bill C-221 looked like it was gaining some real momentum in 2016, but the fact that the US didn’t have legal sports betting ended those efforts. The US officially ended the federal ban on sports betting in 2018, and that ramped up the efforts in Canada as well.
Offshore Betting Sites Can Receive License
Some of the top sports betting operators in the United States are expected to apply for a license in Canada, but there will be some new competition as well. Canadian provinces are allowing offshore betting sites to apply for a license as well, and that could create a highly competitive market.
These offshore betting sites have been taking illegal wagers from Candian residents for years, but Parliament wants to end that threat. By allowing these sites to receive a license, Canada can bring in additional revenue from these sites and end some illegal activity.
Parlay Betting Was Available
Sports betting will not be entirely new to Canada as a form of this industry has been around since 1992, but there was one major restriction. The Canada Lottery was able to offer parlay betting on sporting events, but that rule did not allow for single-game bets to be placed.
The main reason that Parliament allowed for parlay betting was that it believed that match-fixing would not be an issue by allowing bettors to wager on parlays with multiple legs. Kiosks have been set up throughout Canada to allow bettors to make these parlay wagers, and this should allow for the country to have a smooth transition.
Those same parlay betting kiosks will still be utilized, but single-game event wagering will now be offered on these machines.