Antigua and Barbuda Seeks US Gambling Trade Dispute End

Antigua and Barbuda Seeks US Gambling Trade Dispute End

Gaston Brown, Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda, whom brought up the country’s trade dispute with the US at the United Nations General Assembly month that is last. (Image:

Antigua and Barbuda, the tiny twin-island Caribbean country which includes been involved in an online gambling trade dispute with the usa for a decade, is to enter into speaks since the two sides look for to go towards a remedy. A meeting is followed by the move between the islands’ Prime Minister Gaston Browne and US Trade Representative Michael Froman.

The David and Goliath battle began when Antigua and Barbuda objected to the block imposed by the federal government on its very own citizens from using the islands’ online gambling solutions. In 2003, Antigua and Barbuda complained to the World Trade Organization (WTO) that America’s stance contravened the General Agreement on Trades and Services (GATS), a global treaty, drawn up by the WTO in 1995, which is designed to eliminate barriers to trade.

The result, which likely embarrassed the US and astonished most likely also Antigua and Barbuda, was that the WTO sided aided by the islands, ruling, in March 2004, and then again in 2007, that by refusing full market access to online gambling operators on the islands, the United States, a paid-up member associated with the WTO, was at breach of its treaty obligations.

$3.4 Billion in Trade Sanctions

Buoyed by its success, Antigua and Barbuda filed a claim for $3.4 billion in trade sanctions against the US, in the form of authorization to ignore US patent and copyright laws, arguing that this ended up being the value of trade lost as a result associated with restriction of online gambling services between the two countries. This would potentially have allowed the hawaiian islands to ignore the property that is intellectual folks organizations, such as those in the movie and music industry, in order to resell their assets.

The US, which argued, and continues to do so, that it never meant its commitment to GATS to include on the web gambling, offered various undisclosed concessions to the islands as opposed to those demanded, but refused to make the nature of these concessions public, despite phone calls from Congressmen Barney Frank and Ron Paul to do so.

The situation remains unresolved,but still burns brightly in the minds the island’s citizens today. Simply month that is last Browne brought the matter up at the United Nations General Assembly, where he called on the usa to be in the matter, a move that prompted the renewed talks. Both parties have now agreed to construct team to work together regarding the dispute.

‘we have always been encouraged that my administration has been able to secure an ending up in the US Trade Representative, Ambassador Froman, so early,’ said Browne. ‘Ambassador Froman is really a Cabinet-level officer of the US Government and this should facilitate decision-making on policy matters.’

History of on the web in Antigua and Barbuda

Antigua and Barbuda had been an early adopter of online gambling, creating a framework for legislation as far back as 1994, as soon as the industry had been in its infancy. Low taxes and investment in technology infrastructure soon started operators that are drawing. By the year 2000, the islands had 93 online gambling licensees who had been turning in $ 7 billion in income among them. This was also around the time that the US started cracking down on online gambling operators and barring banks from processing transactions, and as a result the number of licensees started to plunge, decimating the industry on the islands.

By 2002, the wide range of operators had dropped to 38 and, by the year that is next whenever Antigua and Barbuda filed its complaint towards the WTO, over 80 % had left the area.

Trump Taj Mahal Protests Create Atlantic City Gridlock

24 individuals were arrested as Taj Mahal union workers protested reduced advantages near Carl Icahn’s Tropicana in Atlantic City. (Image: Ron Tarver/

Trump Taj Mahal employees reduced Atlantic City to gridlock this week that is past blocking roadways in protest against Trump Entertainment’s plans to cut retirement benefits and benefits. The embattled company is searching for permission from a bankruptcy court to break agreements with workers in an effort to keep the Taj Mahal open and prevent Chapter 11.

Twenty-four individuals were arrested as hundreds of members associated with the Unite Here 54 union blocked traffic at the busy downtown intersection of Missouri and Arctic Avenues in a show of organized ‘civil disobedience.’

No one was reported hurt during the protests and none of the protestors have been arrested attempted to resist. While Unite Here said that 750 individuals attended the demonstration, police estimated the figures at around 300.

Trump Entertainment has said it is forced to close the Taj on 13th unless the employment concessions are granted november. It is also demanding $25 million in aid from state government, along with a significantly reduced tax evaluation. Trump Entertainment has also requested authorization to be taken over by billionaire investor Carl Icahn, the major holder of its financial obligation, by converting that debt into ownership. As owner, Icahn would invest $100 then million to keep the Taj alive, but that is ‘if and only if’ the concessions are granted.

Protestors Blame Icahn

Significantly, the demonstrations occurred near the Tropicana, which is owned by Icahn, rather than the Taj, and it’s clear that numerous workers blame him for the threat to their advantages; many held placards featuring pictures of Icahn, emblazoned aided by the motto, ‘Billionaire picking over our bones.’

This week’s protest took place in the 10th anniversary of a comparable labor dispute that saw users of Unite right Here 54 walk out of seven Atlantic City casinos, effectively closing them straight down for per month.

‘When they were rolling in cash, they wanted to go on it all away from us a decade ago,’ said union president Bob McDevitt.

Workers are now actually concerned one casino cutting benefits could trigger an effect that is domino. ‘Casino gambling, when it came here 38 years ago, promised middle-class jobs,’ said the Rev. John Scotland, a neighborhood presbyterian minister and among those arrested. ‘with them. if we enable the Taj to take away benefits, all the gambling enterprises will do away’

Trump Name Removed

Earlier in the week, the Trump title had been eliminated by employees from the front of the Taj. Donald Trump established a lawsuit several months ago for breach of the licensing agreement he finalized with Trump Entertainment five years ago. Although the Taj Mahal, along with the recently shuttered Trump Plaza, ended up being once one of ‘The Donald’s’ pet projects, the casino was left by him company in ’09, negotiating a deal with Trump Entertainment to retain a ten percent stake, in return for continued use of the Trump brand. Ever since then he has had nothing at all to do with the management for the Trump properties, and has been fiercely critical of its owners.

‘This represents a victory that is great us,’ said Ivanka Trump, who confirmed the removal of the name from casino signage. ‘This is an ongoing struggle and we have been litigating it for a few months.’

PPA’s John Pappas Makes Federal Ban Panorama Crystal Murky

John Pappas, PPA President, makes some patently unclear statements about their stand free casino slots heart of vegas on a federal online ban. (Image: Bloomberg/

The Poker Players Alliance (PPA) will fight any legislation that seeks to ban online gaming at a federal level, even if it contains a carve-out for on-line poker. That’s the message from John Pappas, president of the grassroots organization that fights for the interests of Web poker players throughout the US.

Well, that’s what it seemed like Pappas was saying, but a subsequent statement that is follow-up an interview made his views, shall we say, murky to say the least.

Pappas had been responding to a number of rumors circulating of a move to push through a federal bill to ban remote gaming with a carve-out for poker during Congress’ forthcoming lame duck session. Several panelists during the present G2E gambling expo in Las Vegas repeated the rumors, including Bally Technologies CEO John Connelly, who said he expected an initiative to help make ‘everything other than poker illegal’ this November.

‘There’s truly opportunity for some shenanigans to happen [during the lame duck session] and everybody in the video gaming industry should be keeping a close view on what Congress may do,’ warned Pappas. a duck that is lame refers to the period when Congress meets after elections have occurred, but before newly elected representatives’ terms begin.

Some posters on poker forums were alarmed at Pappas’ statement, seeing it as a departure from the PPA’s reported goals. In 2012, whenever Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nevada) and Senator Jon Kyl (R-Arizona) had been examining the viability of these a bill, the PPA offered complete support.

Federal Carve-out Acceptable, Or Perhaps Is It?

However, Pappas later clarified his position. Sort of.

‘If there was a bill that banned on line casino games but legalized online poker at the level that is federal we would support that all day long,’ he told Wait, don’t he say earlier in the day that without casino games, online isn’t sustainable? We’re confused.

Pappas says he is concerned that the ‘carve-out’ for poker that didn’t legalize the game at a level that is federal merely represent a continuation of the status quo, whereby it could be as much as individual states to decide whether they wanted to legalize and regulate, with the exception that online casino gambling would no longer be an alternative for them. On a state degree, he states, internet poker needs the revenue that is extra by online casinos to gain a foothold.

‘We’re likely to fight enamel and nail to safeguard the passions of poker players, but poker-only in the US might not be described as a model that is sustainable benefit players, long-lasting,’ he explained. ‘We as a poker community need to observe that the prosperity of poker often is created on other forms of gaming,’ he added. ‘ If you cut off all other games in the US market, interest and investment would shrink considerably.’

Like we said…huh?


It’s seems likely, too, that the PPA feels it has to stand strong, under its own terms, against Adelson additionally the proponents of Restoration of America’s Wire Act (RAWA) to your end that is bitter. Only if RAWA is passed by Congress, the worst case scenario for the PPA, will it be necessary to engage in a spot of realpolitik and work to negotiate a carve-out for poker.

However, possibly an even more threat that is real the PPA than the lame duck session is the Republicans using over the Senate next year as predicted, hence toppling online poker sympathizer Reid from his position as majority leader. This would undoubtedly favor Adelson’s cause as a major donor to the republicans.

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