The country’s gambling law is expected to come into effect 120 days from the issuance of the regulations.
This leaves operators with a tight schedule to comply with the new rules.
“It is the first time that this important economic activity is regulated in the country,” said the Minister of Foreign Trade and Tourism, Juan Carlos Mathews.
Still in his words: “In South America, Peru becomes the third country to regulate it, after Colombia and Argentina, in the provinces of Buenos Aires, Córdoba and Mendoza.”
Fines for non-compliance with rules in the gambling sector
The regulations will come into force on February 9, 2024.
The Ministry warns of heavy fines for non-compliance.
Operators currently active in Peru’s gaming market will have one month to apply for a license.
This allows companies to apply from February 10 to March 10, 2024. Otherwise, companies could face a fine of up to S/990,000 (€245,394/£212,401/$257,838).
The ministry also warned that failure to apply for a license could result in criminal prosecution. The government would also ban operators from offering games.
“The regulations will allow the Peruvian State to raise approximately S/162 million annually, to be invested in the reactivation of tourism, tourist infrastructure works, promotion of sport and support for mental health programs”, he added.
“We have also made it clear that it will not affect betting and prize payments. The money won as a prize will be collected in full. The tax will be applied to domestic and foreign online gambling and betting companies.”
Highlighted consultation process approves betting games
The published regulations are the result of a public consultation process that included 772 opinions received from public and private players.
These include contributions from the Ministry of Justice and Human Rights, the Ministry of Economy and Finance and the Financial Intelligence Unit of Peru.
Other organizations consulted included gaming operators, suppliers, law firms and international consultancy firms.
Mincetur then held meetings with professionals from the public and private sector, as well as unions and technology suppliers.
“This result is extremely important, as it demonstrates the coordinated work carried out by Mincetur with transparency, predictability and openness, considering that all actors involved in the issue participated in the regulation development process”, added Mathews.
The path to regulation: gambling law in Peru
In August 2022, the president of Peru, Pedro Castillo, sanctioned Law No. 31,557, which sought to regulate the country’s gaming industry.
However, the law faced criticism from some quarters, with some suggesting that the original legislation effectively exempted foreign operators from taxes. As such, Peru subsequently approved Law No. 31,806.
This law changed a series of provisions of the original text.
The changes included a tripling of license fees or 3% of net profit, whichever is greater.
The law also established a point of consumption regime for online games, with only Peruvian domain addresses released for use.