Study Committee for Loto-Quebec's Online Casino Venture

Published Saturday, July 10, 2010 -

Loto-Quebec C.E.O. Alain Cousineau recently announced that the common platform for online games will be hosted in Montreal Quebec. Now the government of Quebec has put together an advisory committee of independent experts whose primary role will be to study the effects of online gambling.
The Provincial Finance Minister Raymond Bachand said recently, "We have authorized Loto-Québec to develop online games but we are going to ensure that everything is done to maintain ... the fight against gambling addiction,"
A strong anti gambling critic, Sol Boxenbaum said that the public report that the advisory committee expects to release will be useless. Boxenbaum maintains, "Three years from now, you're looking at suicides, you're looking at bankruptcies, you're looking at all kinds of things that can go wrong." The committee will monitor the evolution of the site and the different games that it offers. It is expected to submit a written report to the minister within three years, although the committee can only offer advice. The government is not obliged to follow its recommendations.
The committee will be comprised of a policing expert from Quebec 's Ministry of Public Security, the director of a centre specializing in alcohol and gambling addiction as well as professors from several Quebec universities.
Chairing the committee will be University of Montreal psychology professor Louise Nadeau. Nadeau said it's preferable that the government controls online gambling so that, 
"Profits go directly to the state.” She added that they will not be giving money to organized crime if the industry is regulated. “You can build in as many prevention strategies as possible," Nadeau commented. As an addictions expert and her experience with similar tasks she told reporters that even the mandate, "is a gamble."
Quebec, is looking for profits with officials estimating the total gaming revenue in Quebec is currently about $50 million a year, and will jump to four times that amount in the next five years. As a competitor in the online market, it could claim approximately 40 per cent of the total gaming revenues for the province. Cousineau said, the venture is expected to create at least 15 new jobs in Montreal.





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