Online Gambling Developments in Different European Countries

31 May 2012 – By Cristian Dragomir

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European governments and regulating authorities have taken decisions which concern the internet gambling market. After initiating a regulated online gambling regime earlier this year, the Danish Gambling Authority has prohibited unlicensed gaming operators from advertising in any form. Those unlicensed online casino operators that ignore the ban will face stiff fines. The ban applies to print, digital or any TV media and also to any form of sponsorship.

In Ireland, lawmakers have postponed to 2014 the proposal to tax online gambling operators. The government said that Ireland’s economy and the Euro crisis are more urgent than online gambling. Irish minister wants to publish the proposal early in 2013 and in the first part of 2014 he wants the law to be passed. The whole year of 2013 will give sufficient time for a debate and consultative process. Online casino companies based in Ireland have received good news with this announcement made by the government.

News from Italy was not so good because the Italian online gambling regulator reported for April 2012 a weakening market compared to March 2012. The numbers revealed an 8% slow down compared to March 2012 but were better than those in April 2011. Compared to April 2011, fixed odds sports betting was down 29.1 % at €18.1 million compared to April 2011. The horse racing sector also registered lower revenues in this period.

On the Spanish market, the news refers to online gambling licenses that will be issued on June 1 as scheduled but with a small delay for the websites bearing the .es domain suffix. This delay has been agreed between the regulator and the operator, after the request made by the operators that needed a gap between the issue of licenses and the commencement of operations. The request was made because operators did not want to kick off on a weekend, because it would be difficult to resolve any technical problems which could appear. Therefore, the operations will commence on June 5, the date when online casinos will go live on the internet and Spanish players will start playing their favorite online casino style games.

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