The MGA’s Key Function Certificate Requirements

As of the 1st July 2018, the new Gaming Act will require licensees to identify the persons responsible for the key functions, who will be issued with a Key Function Certificate following the Malta Gaming Authority’s (“MGA”) assessment of their fitness and propriety.

This change will be implemented as follows:

1. Notification at the earliest possible to the MGA where such key functions are to be fulfilled by persons who are already approved by the MGA, either in their capacity as employees or as service providers of the licensee under the Remote Gaming Regulations.

2. Where the individuals selected to provide key functions are not approved by the MGA, they shall notify the MGA and submit all the required documentation between the 1st August 2018 until the 30th September  2018.

3. Until all key persons are assessed by the Authority, the Key Official, appointed under the Remote Gaming Regulations, shall be temporarily responsible for the vacant key functions.

Conflicts in Key Functions in Terms of Article 9 of the Gaming Authorisations and Compliance Directive

1. Compliance-based roles and roles centred around business growth are incompatible. The Chief Executive role, responsibility for the licensee’s finances (except payment of tax and fees due in terms of law), and responsibility for marketing and advertising, are incompatible with the following roles:

a.      Compliance

b.      Player support; and

c.      Responsible gaming.

2. The individual responsible for the PMLFT is expected to avoid taking on responsibilities that may conflict with such function or prejudices the person’s independence in such role, including but not limited to the Data Protection Officer.

3. The Data Protection Officer role is incompatible with roles that manage or control personal data, or which conflicts with such function or prejudices the person’s effectiveness in such role, such as the MLRO.

4. The person responsible for internal audit should normally avoid holding other functions.

Although the above is meant as prima facie guidance, licensees shall ensure that conflicting roles do not belong to the same individual.

However, start-up undertakings as defined in the Gaming License Fees Regulations and recognised by the Authority, may be allowed during the first year of operation, to have the same individual performing roles, provided that the Authority is satisfied that the integrity of the licensed operation will not be adversely affected. Additionally, such undertaking will not be required to have a person responsible for internal audit during the first year of operation.

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