Dutch Gambling Watchdog Seeks Help From Fellow Regulators
The Netherlands Gaming Authority, Kansspelautoriteit has turned to fellow gambling regulators for assisting it in making changes to the current online gambling market in the country.
In a letter sent by Marja Appelman, Kansspelautoriteit Chief Executive Officer, the Dutch gambling watchdog explained it wanted to know more about the functioning of the regulatory systems in other jurisdictions, but also about the available enforcement actions against those sides operating outside of the law.
Defining Certain Terms
Appelman also described the current situation in the Netherlands’ market amidst the country’s efforts to put an end to unregulated operations.
In order to avoid any possible confusion, Appelman provided a thorough explanation of the terms “illegal”, “unlicensed”, and “unregulated”, which are used by Kansspelautoriteit to define an activity prohibited under the country’s Betting and Gaming Act. This also means the said terms apply to online gambling, which is deemed illegal under the provisions of the current law, therefore outlawing all activities of online gambling operators targeting Dutch players.
The regulator also stresses that certain gambling operators could be fined in their activities were against the law.
Kansspelautoriteit adopted new regulations last summer, banning unlicensed operators from using Dutch national symbols, such as tulips and windmills to players in the Netherlands, but also forbade them to offer services via websites with a .nl domain.
Awaiting The New Legal Framework
The country’s regulator also recommended foreign-based gambling companies to block Dutch IP addresses, thus effectively blocking Dutch players from gambling on their websites. By doing so, said Kansspelautoriteit, those companies would avoid fines and legal actions.
Although the Netherlands has shown it is willing to open its market to online gambling, so far little progress has been made on that matter. The new legal framework was greenlighted by the country’s Lower House nearly two years ago, but before it could come into effect, it will need to receive the Senate’s approval as well.
Both lawmakers and gambling regulators have recently said the law could receive the green light during this year. In that case, the new law will come into effect in 2019. Once the new law is adopted, Kansspelautoriteit will have the authority to award licenses to all sides interested in doing business in the Netherlands.