Malta regulator voices concerns over iGaming skill gap

23 November 2018

Malta’s gaming regulator has called for a greater focus on training and education in the industry after a new survey revealed almost 800 positions in the country's iGaming industry were were left vacant at the end of 2017.

The Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) said one of the main factors for the number of vacancies was a lack of skills specific to gaming that cannot be found elsewhere in the economy.

The regulator's Information Unit conducted a survey of its licensed remote gaming operators, which revealed there was a particular lack of qualified candidates for roles in gaming operations and development sectors. This area alone accounted for 269 - or 35% - of the 781 vacancies for which suitable candidates could not be found.

The survey also found that 33% of respondents would not apply for roles for which they felt they did not have sufficient work experience, with a further 24% saying they would not apply for roles unless they had relevant qualifications. 

Marketing positions accounted for 183 of the vacant roles, followed by 135 iGaming technology positions, despite the MGA noting that there is especially high demand in Malta for marketing and technology jobs in other sectors. 

A total of 84 positions were left empty in legal and compliance, risk and fraud, as well as 67 in finance, payment and HR, and 43 in data and analysis.

Of all the roles that were available, the MGA said around 67% were for operational funcitons that could be filled by people leaving formal education. Just over one quarter of roles were inmiddle management positions that would require more direct experience.

Direct employment in the Maltese remote gaming sector stood at 5,861 full-time equivalent jobs at the end of 2017, up by 10% on the previous year. The industry generated €1.1bn (£972.6m/$1.2bn) in terms of gross value added in Malta last year, accounting for 11% of the country's economic total.

Image: Santeri Viinamäki