After much deliberation by officials, online gaming has finally been approved on the island of Tinian. One of the three principal islands of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana islands, it forms the Tinian Municipality and counts San Jose as its largest village.
What does this mean for online gaming in Tinian?
The obvious outcome of this legislation being passed is that online gaming is now a fully legal activity within Tinian. The Tinian and Aguigan Legislative Delegation amended the 1989 Casino Gaming Control Act on the island to add these new local measures with immediate effect.
Mayor Joey Patrick San Nicolas and Gaming Controller of Tinian Joe Kiyoshi, were in attendance at the meeting which saw the new stance on online gaming within the island confirmed. With Tonga also giving the go-ahead for its first ever casino, these are exciting times for the gambling industry.
What does this mean for online casino sites wishing to operate in Tinian?
Any gaming company or online casino site wishing to operate on the island will have to implement a few different measures before they are allowed. Firstly, they will be required to obtain the necessary licence from the Tinian authorities to operate legally on the island. Part of getting this licence will be an agreement to implement geolocation software on its site to track the location of any consumers using it to gamble or play games. This is with the intention of limiting online gaming activity within specific areas as agreed by the Tinian Government.
In addition, it is thought that online operators will be legally obliged to pay a $300,000 yearly licence fee as well as paying a 5% gross online revenue tax every month. Whether this will deter any potential online operators from moving into Tinian remains to be seen. Prospective online operators would also need to build and run a hotel-casino complex on the island with at least 300 rooms, which could be another sticking point to the island’s online gaming aspirations.