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Argentina – Argentina looks to ban cash transactions in casinos

By - 6 October 2015

The deputy representing the province of Córdoba Diego Mestre, has put forward a bill which would only ban the use of cash in casinos and slot parlours in Argentina in order to curb money laundering and tax evasion.

Instead only credit cards and debit cards would be permitted.

According to Mestre’s proposals, Argentina’s anti money laundering laws would be amended so that they would incorporate new measures which only allow credit cards and debit cards in casinos and slot parlours. The use of credit and debit cards would be the only means of purchasing chips and betting in casinos, betting shops, bingo halls, racetracks, and slot parlours throughout Argentina, he said.

Speaking to local press Mestre said that the new law would safeguard against money laundering: “With putting the process within the banking system, the way of acquiring chips and betting, would be by informing the banking system who and how much is being bet. Today, casinos and the gambling business engage in financial activities in the context of entertainment, but they do not care who or where the money is coming from. Neither the state nor anyone knows for sure where they these funds end up which may come from all kinds of crimes, such as drug trafficking or arms dealing,” he said.

Mestre’s proposals are the latest in a number of measures which seek to enforce stricter rules when it comes to financial transactions in casinos and other gaming establishments in Argentina. In May 2014 Deputy Juan Carlos Juárez introduced a bill into in the Buenos Aires Legislature which would prohibit cash betting throughout the province.

The bill would make it obligatory for all slot machine parlours, casinos and lottery outlets to put the technology in place which would allow the player to make their bet: “via debit cards, credit cards and other forms of electronic payment.” In addition to imposing daily betting limits the legislative initiative would also ensure that all prizes would be deposited into bank accounts directly and “under no circumstances shall be made in cash.”

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