The Gambling industry is a fast-changing environment and the persons responsible for carrying out key functions in gambling companies shall remain up to date with regulations, compliance requirements and industry standards. As a general competency criterion, Key Persons must demonstrate academic qualification and professional experience applicable to their roles.

In October 2021, the Malta Gambling Authority (MGA) published Policy on the Eligibility and Ongoing Competency Criteria for Key Persons in conjunction with amendments to the Gaming Authorisations and Compliance Directive 2018. The Policy emphasises the importance of continuous professional development for the roles subject to the Key Function certification. Renewal of the certificate requires individuals to demonstrate compliance with the competency criteria, outlined for each function separately in the policy.

When applying for the renewal of their Key Function Certificate, Key Persons will now be required to show that they have attained a minimum number of CPD hours during the calendar year. Non-compliance with this requirement might result in the Key Function Certificate renewal being denied. MGA can also ban an individual from executing the function for a period up to 6 months.

The following training requirements apply to the MGA Key Functions as a minimum:

  • The Chief Executive Role or Equivalent – 5CPD hours
  • Management of the Operations of the Authorised Person – 10CPD hours
  • Compliance with the Obligations of the Authorised Person – 10CPD hours
  • Legal Affairs of the Authorised Person – 10CPD hours
  • Adherence to applicable legislation relating to data protection and privacy – 10CPD hours
  • Prevention of Money Laundering and the Financing of Terrorism – 10CPD hours
  • Technological Affairs of the Authorised Person – 10CPD hours
  • Internal Audit – 10CPD hours

The same individual can exercise several functions simultaneously if there is no conflict of interest involved. As a rule, business centred roles are considered to conflict with compliance-based roles, while AML related functions are conflicted with that relating to data protection. The Key Function related to internal audit is considered wholly incompatible with all other Key Function roles.

As the Policy states: “Key Persons authorised to carry out multiple Key Functions will be required to fulfil the relevant CPD requirements for each role.” The training shall be taken on an annual basis before the application for the Key Function Certificate renewal is applied to MGA.  However, a training can be considered relevant for multiple Key Functions, if it is covering the requirements for several functions and is CPD accredited as such.

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