The Kahnawake Mohawk Territory is a First Nations reserve located within the borders of Quebec. The Kahnawake Gaming Commission, one of the most popular online gaming regulators in the world, offers gambling licenses to Internet-based poker, casino and sportsbooks operators.
Since 1996, the Kahnawake Gaming Commission allows casinos to fully operate on a professional level for online bettors in a reliable and accountable way, granting licenses and regulating online gaming since 1999. All interactive gaming, land-based poker rooms and raffles based within the Mohawk Territory of Kahnawake are conducted by the Commission.
One of the benefits of choosing Kahnawake as a destination for setting up online gaming companies is the fact that different types of licenses can be obtained from it. Whether it’s an online casino, a sports book or an online poker room, Kahnawake offers betting companies four types of licenses to operate in:
1. Interactive Gaming License (IGL): These are provided for an approved hosting facility within Kahnawake, and only one can be issues at any given time by Mohawk Internet Technologies.
2. Client Provider Authorization (CPA): Online casinos, poker, sportsbooks and other interactive gaming services all fall under this category. There is no limit to the number of CPA licenses that can be issued by provider.
3. Inter-Jurisdictional Authorization (IJA): This license is for an approved entity that holds a valid interactive gaming license issued by another jurisdiction and that wants to locate some or all of its equipment and personnel within Kahnawake.
4. Key Person License (KPL): For at least one person who operates managerial or operational functions for the entity that holds a CPA.
All willing applicants are required to follow a very clear set of rules before and during the application process in order to ensure transparency and authenticity. For example, operators must undergo testing by third-party auditing firms affiliated with the Kahnawake Gaming Commission: including NMI, TST, iTech, Labs and Gaming Associates.
Additionally, the Kahnawake Gaming Commission requires approved agents to screen prospective owners to ensure that each applicant is up to their ethical standards - as they will only issue a license if they feel operators are fair, honest and professional with their business. The basic principles to follow in Kahnawake are:
- Guaranteed payouts for all members.
- Fair services and products offered to customers.
- Geographical criteria: gambling services within the jurisdiction are permitted to be used by local individuals and entities only.
The Kahnawake Gaming Commission also works with other jurisdictions, sharing information on licensees to ensure a transparent regulatory process. They have signed Memoranda of Understanding with jurisdictions in Malta, Gibraltar and with Antigua and Barbuda.
The main objective of the Commission is to make sure to provide a lawful basis for the regulation and control of interactive gambling platforms which are located in Kahnawake, protecting persons under 18 years of age and other vulnerable populations from engaging in gambling.
Players located in US are not able to access casinos or betting sites based in Kahnawake since September 2016, after legal disputes with the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement.