Belize Gambling License Review

Interested in a Belize gambling license? If so, the team at Casinnovate understands why this jurisdiction has captured your focus. Belize offers an affordable license, lucrative tax benefits, straightforward requirements and regulations, and a single online gaming license that covers all types of internet gambling activities.

Located on the eastern coast of Central America, Belize is a Caribbean country that, among other qualities, has established itself as a global business and financial services destination. It is a member of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and has forged strong business relations with other Latin American economies. Being an English-speaking nation, Belize is a popular destination for British, Canadian, and American investors.

Belize is one of the first countries that recognized the potential for electronic gaming and introduced the Computer Wagering Licensing Act, 1995. This allowed the country to enact legislation on the establishment of online wagering and provided the proper conduct and regulation of gambling via the internet. That said, the sector was improved further when the nation’s government introduced the Gaming Control Act, 2000, which regulated the entire gambling sector. Additionally, the Government also supplemented the laws by introducing the Gaming Control Regulations 2004.

The Gaming Control Board (GCB) is the government body that regulates gaming in Belize. It controls the entire online gaming industry including the license issuance process as well as the functioning of online casinos. Therefore, if you seek an online gaming license in Belize, you will need to obtain your operating permit from the GCB.

While there are many benefits to obtaining this license, there are also many factors to consider before applying for it. Like most gambling licenses, there’s more to getting an iGaming license in Belize than simply filling out a form and paying a fee. In this Belize gambling license review, we’ll discuss the type of license you need, the different requirements that must be met to attain it, and the associated costs. Our goal is to provide you with the information that can help you to determine if this gambling regulator is the right fit for your business.

Belize License Fast Facts

  • First gambling license issued – 1996
  • Regulator – Gaming Control Board
  • License provider – Gaming Control Board
  • Number of licenses types – 3 (only 1 online gaming license)
  • Approximate license costs – US$15,500+ (does not include deposit or other fees)
  • Average time to obtain license – 3 – 4 months
  • License validity period – 1 year

Types of Licenses – What Licenses Does Belize Offer?

Types of Licenses - What Licenses Does

There are three main types of Belize gambling licenses. That said, only one of them pertains to offering gambling activities online.

With that said, the three main types of licenses include:

  • Gaming Licenses for land-based casinos
  • Gaming Machine License for land-based gaming machines (e.g. slot machines, video poker machines, and any other electronic gambling machine)
  • Online Gaming License – This is also known as a Belize Online Casino License

The third license in the above list is the one on which this Belize gaming license review will focus.

As a B2C iGaming operator, all you require is this single online gaming license from the GCB. It is an all-in-one license that allows the operator who holds it to offer all forms of gambling activities, such as:

  • Slots
  • Casino table and card games
  • Poker
  • Live dealer casino games
  • Sports Betting
  • eSports
  • Virtual Sports
  • Bingo
  • Lottery

The Belize online gaming license is valid for one year.

The License Process – How Do I Get a Belize Gambling License?

To get a Belize license you need to meet certain requirements. This includes submitting paperwork, passing due diligence checks, and making a deposit.

The License Process - How Do I Get a Belize Gambling License?

Requirements for obtaining a license

Step 1 – Register your company in Belize

To obtain a license you will need to have your company registered in Belize. More specifically, the servers that host your website and all the data must be physically present in Belize territory. At the very least, your client database must be hosted on this server.

Step 2 – Make a deposit

Part of the initial application requirement is making a US$500,000 deposit. This deposit will be held in trust by the Gaming Control Board as indemnity against fraud and/or other violations.

Step 3 – Submit paperwork

An applicant must submit paperwork that shows information about company directors and managers to demonstrate integrity, financial means, and competence. Additionally, anyone who has a financial interest in the company must submit copies of their personal ID as well as two recent black and white photos. Examples of documents include:

  • Notarized Passport Copy
  • Notarized Utility Bill issued in the last 2 months
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Bank Reference Letter

If the founders of the company do not reside in the country or they do not have local citizenship, they must submit an application for citizenship as well as provide a copy of this application.

The company must provide profit and loss statements for the previous three years to verify the absence of any debts. Furthermore, all company founders and any persons financially interested in the company that obtain income from the operation must provide copies of their fingerprints.

Furthermore, before the submission of the application, applicants must ensure they fulfill certain eligibility conditions*.

Belize Gaming License - Basic Eligibility

*Note: The above is not a full list of eligibility requirements. Be sure to read all GCB stipulations prior to submitting an application.

Step 4 – Fulfil requirements linked to the security deposit

There are specific security deposit requirements that must be fulfilled by the license holder, such as:

  • Depositing reserves and security deposits in the Central Bank of Belize
  • Reporting any deposits of reserves withdrawals to the GCB
  • Paying out all winnings without delay to clients to avoid disputes or conflicts

Step 5 – Evaluation of application

Once your application has been reviewed and submitted, the Government evaluation process will then take place. Your application will be evaluated with a background check that is conducted based on the information you’ve provided. This evaluation process involves checking all details including technical information, the business plan, and personal information.

As long as you can meet all requirements, obtaining a Belize gaming license should be relatively quick. It can take as little as 24 hours for your application to process if all the paperwork is filed correctly and the required fees are paid. That said, the average time it takes to obtain a license from start to finish is between 3 – 4 months.

It’s worth noting that all Belize gaming licenses are required to be renewed annually on March 31st, regardless of when the license was obtained. As this is the case, the most cost-effective plan is to apply for a license as close to this date as you can.

Finally, unlike other regulators, the Gaming Control Board has a very limited online presence. This means it is difficult to find publicly available information that can help you get an idea of whether you are an appropriate gaming license candidate or how to go about obtaining a license. Since this is the case, we highly recommend you seek the assistance of professionals – such as some of our partners – who have experience in helping operators with the licensing application process and who are up to date with all the latest GCB requirements.

License Costs – How Much Does a Belize License Cost?

License Costs - How Much Does a Belize License Cost?

Over the years, the Belize gaming license cost has dropped in price. For instance, the annual license fee was initially US$50,000, but was lowered to US$15,000 in 2014. Most recently it was dropped to US$10,000 in 2022, making it even more affordable.

With that said, the following example is a breakdown of Belize gambling license cost**:

Belize Gambling License Cost

The approximate total fee for your initial application is US$15,500. That said, there are other cost factors to consider. Beyond the annual US$10,000 renewal fee, other costs to take into account include:

  • The tax amount is about 0.75% of the gross annual turnover, up to a maximum of US$25,000. That said, for companies that conduct online gambling businesses as their sole business outside of Belize, they may qualify for a tax exemption.
  • A US$500,000 deposit must be held in trust by GCB as indemnity against fraud or other violations.

**Note: Please be advised that the fees we’ve listed are for informational purposes only to give you an idea of overall cost. Fees may vary and are subject to change.

License Regulations – What Rules Am I required to Follow?

License Regulations - What Rules Am I required to Follow?

As a license holder, you will be required to follow all regulations that have been put into place by the Gaming Control Board. This includes being compliant with anti-money laundering, anti-fraud rules as well as avoid all criminal activity.

It should also be noted that the conditions of the Belize gaming license prohibits operators from accepting bets from any person who resides within the country.

In what regions does this license allow me to operate?

For the most part, a Belize gambling license allows you to operate in any jurisdiction where online gambling is not illegal. That being said, if a region is governed by local online gambling laws, such as the UK, Sweden, Denmark, Spain, France, etc., an additional license from the relevant and appropriate regulator is required to offer gambling activities in these markets.

Regions not covered by this iGaming license include (but are not limited to):

  • Belize
  • Costa Rica
  • Curacao
  • Aruba
  • Bonaire
  • USA

License Pros and Cons – Is a Belize License Right for Me?

License Pros and Cons – Is a Belize License Right for Me?

A Belize license has many benefits, but it isn’t the best choice for every company in need of a gambling license. The following is a look at the most common pros and cons associated with this license.

Belize gaming license advantages

  • Low long-term costs – For iGaming companies who are interested in saving over the long-term, the Belize license is ideal. The low initial application fee and low renewal fee makes it highly cost effective.
  • Possible lucrative tax benefits – While there is an approximate 0.75% gross annual turnover up to US$25,000, some companies may qualify for a tax exemption.
  • Fast application process – As long as all required documents have been submitted, all stipulations followed, and all fees paid, the processing of an application can take as little as 24 hours.
  • One license covers all gambling activities – You only need to apply for one iGaming license from Belize, which covers all forms of gambling activities from online casinos to sports betting to lottery.

Belize gaming license drawbacks

  • US$500,000 required deposit – Though this required deposit is to be held in trust by GCB for indemnity against fraud or other violations, it’s a huge upfront cost.
  • Fixed renewal date – A Belize license renewal may be cheaper than other regulators, but it’s due every year on March 31st. No exceptions. This is a disadvantage if you are awarded a license close to this date as you will need to pay a renewal fee, even if you’ve only held the license for a month or only a few days.

Belize Gambling License FAQ

Belize Gambling License FAQ
How much does a gaming license cost in Belize?

The initial application is US$15,500. However, this does not include the previously mentioned required $500,000 deposit, US$10,000 renewal fee or the potential 0.75% tax.

How long does it take to get a gambling license with Belize?

It takes approximately 3 – 4 months from start to finish. However, once an application is submitted it can take a minimum of 24 hours.

What type of gambling license do I need?

There is only one Belize Online Gaming License and this license covers all gambling activities, including slots, casino games, sports betting, bingo, poker, lottery, and live dealer games.

Why is Belize a good license to get?

The primary benefits of this license are low application fee, low renewal fee, potential tax benefits, fast processing times, and requiring only one gaming license that covers all gambling activities.

Is it legal to operate without an online gambling license?

No. Choosing to operate without a license to avoid the costs associated with obtaining and holding one will not do your business any favours and is illegal. Not only will you damage the reputation of the iGaming industry but choosing to operate on the black market will cost you far more than any license fees in the long run. Without a license you put yourself at risk of high fines, criminal charges, and possible prison time. You also destroy your chances of ever obtaining a license from a respected regulator in the future.

How Can Casinnovate Help Me Get a Belize License?

Casinnovate can help you by connecting you with the reputable experts who can provide you with the best assistance in obtaining a gambling license in Belize. This includes connecting you with the software platforms who provide products and services that are compliant with the GCB.

Some of the online gambling software platform professionals we recommend include:


Poker Slots Betting Live Casino Games

We’re here to help you along your journey to successfully grow your iGaming business. If you have any questions about the Belize gambling license, or any other software solutions that can benefit your operation, don’t hesitate to get in touch.