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New regulations for online gambling in the Netherlands

12 April 2015

After months of discussions and negotiations with various stakeholders, it is very likely that the Netherlands are ready to legalize and regulate online games. The newly appointed Dutch State Secretary for Security and Justice, Klaas Dijkhoff, spoke in favor of the online gaming regulation in the Netherlands. The annual report of the Dutch Gaming Authority (KSA) has shown how illegal operators control a relevant part of the gaming market in the country. Thus Dijkhoff wants implement a regulation of the online gaming industry in the future, the Dutch legislation will deal intensively with this problem. According to Dijkhoff however, the legislature must take many different factors into account in the development of the new online gaming law. Severe or costly requirements of the legal industry can unintentionally harm and help promote illegal operators. In its report of 2014, the Dutch Gaming Authority published some new and interesting data about the market and confirmed what Dijkhoff said that the illegal operators are the biggest problem of the country and that the legislator should take care intensely about this in the coming years.

According to information provided by the KSA from 2014, the Agency conducted 22 investigations into illegal online gambling and 19 studies of illicit supply of online gambling for Dutch citizens and it was also the closing of the activities of an unspecified number of local and international illegal operators mentioned in the report. It means that the revenue of legal operators are estimated up to € 2.2 billion and € 480 million of which tax revenues that could be generated including slot machines in. The KSA also assumes that sales of illegal operators located on the Dutch market are between € 250 to € 850 million. The KSA said that more than 200 operators have been informed of the possibility of a gaming license, which can be purchased once the new legislation comes into place. At the same time, the KSA also warned all operators who are not currently compliant with the Dutch legal work that they take the risk that an application for a license under the new Remote Gambling Act will be denied.

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