Netherlands Adopts Remote Gambling Act
The Netherlands Senate has approved a new Remote Gambling Act that sets a tax rate of 29 percent of gross gaming revenue.
The bill was first passed by the lower house of the country’s Parliament more than two years ago. The new regulations are scheduled to go into effect with the issuing of new licenses in mid-2020.
Under the bill, unlicensed operators who illegally targeted Dutch bettors will face a two-year blackout on licensing, as well as a possibility that the state will move to block their sites in the future.
The country’s Ministry of Justice and Security confirmed the act had been adopted and emphasized a need to eliminate the unregulated online market in the country. The act also includes “an extensive package of measures to prevent gambling addiction”.
Online players will be required to create a personal profile indicating their comfortable level of gambling. A central register will also be created to temporarily exclude problem players from gambling and also to allow for health referrals for treatment of problem gambling.
“We see that society is digitizing and more than half a million Dutch people are participating unprotected in online gambling at the moment,” said Sander Dekker, Dutch Minister for Legal Protection in a press release. “This involves big risks such as gambling addiction and fraud. I am happy that we can now offer players a secure offer so that games of chance can be played online in a responsible manner.”
The new act is gaining support in the industry.
One party welcoming this introduction is online gambling group Betsson, whose CEO Pontus Lindwall commented: “Finally, there will be modern gambling legislation in one more big monopolistic market in Europe,” said Betsson CEO Pontus Lindwall in a press release. “Betsson Group already has 12 local licenses in Europe, and we are looking forward to the Netherlands following the suit of other European countries in opening up the market to competition.”
According to local reports, about 300 gambling firms have expressed interest in seeking Dutch licensing and about 50 firms are expected to formally apply for licenses.