Resolution Approved By European Parliament

26 August 2013 – By Cristian Dragomir

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The online casino gambling market is a very developed in the European Union, with millions of customers who enjoy their favorite casino style games from the comfort of their own homes. Last October, the European Commission adopted a roadmap entitled “Towards a comprehensive European framework for online gambling”. Recently, the European Parliament approved a resolution on online gambling that focuses on increased cooperation between member states on issues of consumer protection and money laundering. The resolution, approved by 572 votes to 79, with 61 abstentions, acknowledges that gambling is an activity of a special nature and must be accompanied by strong consumer protection measures. Also, it has to respect the subsidiarity principle while promoting improved cooperation among member states to combat fraud, money laundering and match-fixing in sports.

An interesting aspect of this resolution is the proposal of setting up EU-wide “self-exclusion registers”, personal loss or time limits. Through this feature, any customer who wishes to exclude himself from gambling will have the opportunity to be automatically self-excluded from other licensed online casino operators. The self-exclusion will also be applied to any online casino player who surpasses his gambling limits. In order to prevent minors from accessing online gambling websites and prevent multiple accounts per player, the lawmakers also recommend the introduction of uniform common systems for electronic identification. Online casino sites will be forced to carry a visible “trust mark” or logo of the regulatory authority, a measure meant to help players distinguish safe and legal sites.

Representatives of the online gambling section at the Chamber of Commerce said the report on online gambling needs to ensure fair gaming and betting products, high responsible gaming standards and consumer protection, the right to privacy, as well as the need to keep us to speed with technical developments. Existing regulators and the EU-licensed industry have acknowledged for years that the online gambling industry provides a significant contribution to many state members’ GDP and many workplaces for citizens. Public dialogues will be held on the subject with expert overview of the European Parliament’s position. Online casino fans will have to wait and see what the future brings on the European online gambling market.

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