Ireland’s Department of Justice said a crowded legislative agenda brought on by the country’s economic and financial woes will push back consideration of casino legalization by at least a year.
Citing new laws that must be passed to comply with bailout agreements reached between the government, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund, the Irish Amusement Trades Association said that a new Gambling Control Act is at least 12-15 months away.
Ireland’s existing gaming legislation dates back to 1956 but lacks clearly defined laws governing casinos, which technically are illegal but offer table games and slot machines as private-member clubs.
The new regulations are expected to introduce a licensing framework that could have dramatically expanded the industry. But proposals from the current government would have limited the size and location of casinos, so the delay is not seen as a problem for prospective casino owners.