Online Gambling Boost for Manitoba

By teaming up with British Columbia, Manitoba is likely to become the fourth Canadian province to legalize and regulate online gambling.

Manitoba is the latest Canadian province set to legalize and regulate online gambling, with an online site to be launched in 2013.

Manitoba Lotteries is to team up with the British Columbia Lottery Corporation (BCLC), to avail of BCLC's experience.

BCLC will provide site design, testing and development services as well as managing Manitoba's online gambling website, which will be launched with casino and poker games. It is hoped that sports betting and bingo can be launched simultaneously.

Manitoba Lotteries Minister Steve Ashton estimated that Manitobans currently spend 37 million Canadian dollars wagering at 2,000 online gambling sites. Manitoba's site is expected to bring in $1.5m in its first year and up to $17m a year by 2018. 5% of net online gambling revenues will be earmarked for gambling addiction programs.

Quebec and British Columbia already offer online gambling services through provincial lotteries, while Ontario is expected to launch similar services this year.