Political Confusion In Antigua Over Online Gambling

Published Thursday, November 11, 2010 - Online-Casinos.com

The World Trade Organization has made some good things happen in some situations but when it comes to some of the rules they are set aside in favour of the big players while neglecting the rights of smaller nations.

A bitter battle has been ongoing with the United States regarding the USA’s shredding of the online gambling industry there and it’s repercussions in the rest of the world that offered internet betting.

Allegations in Antigua and Barbuda, the tiny island group in the Caribbean, by a member of parliament that a settlement had been reached in the legal case against America has been denied by the Baldwin Spencer administration currently ruling the country.
Negotiations have been ongoing since 2007 regarding a World Trade Organization ruling that awarded Antigua and Barbuda $21 million USD for restitution to countries that were affected by the US prohibition on online gambling.

The USA has refused to acknowledge the WTO stance that money is indeed owed to Antigua and Barbuda forcing the island nation to seek more advanced legal and political means to get paid.

Political confusion has come to the Antigua parliament as one politician is claiming a settlement has been reached while another says the opposite. Antigua’s Labour Party Chairman and Deputy Leader Gaston Browne spoke on a radio program recently claiming that the current administration had reached a settlement deal of $10 million USD. Browne also claimed that the government has agreed to prohibit online gambling in the future.

Harold Lovell the Finance Minister has denied that any such settlement has been reached. Lovell did acknowledge however, that negotiations are ongoing. Lovell commented,
"We have not accepted any offers that have been put on the table," adding, "Before we accept any offers that are placed on the table we would consult with the relevant parties here in Antigua and Barbuda." Lovell continued, that the government would look at the impact of any decision before a final agreement was reached. The fragile economy of the small country is at risk and the prohibition of online gambling in would cause immense hardship there.


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