Schleswig-Holstein Supports Gambling
Germany’s 16 states’ aims to do away with their domination on gambling and to revise its present gambling policies so that it complies with the European Union’s (EU) laws.
With regard to these movements, the web’s premier operators released a statement recently and congratulated Schleswig-Holstein’s positive stance to do away with its monopolistic traits. Gambling legalization will stand the state in good stead.
“Online gambling sites that operate in Europe have requested that all European governments comply with EU policies and regulations. A representative added: “The casino vendors await only the proclamation of the popular state’s new internet gambling policies.”
The bill proclaimed by the state is solely based on the feedback from internet casinos; according to them it’s a practical model which is in acquiescence with the European Court of Justice Guidelines and enables trustworthy internet casino vendors to offer German players a secure and lucrative service that favours EU law conditions.
The state also aims to safeguard its lottery monopoly, although it aims to be amenable to market realities in other gaming jurisdictions and at the same time to warrant player protection. Nonetheless, the Minister Presidents accepted on the key issues paper on the 6 April for the continuance of the Gaming Treaty, not favoured by internet casinos and which is dissimilar to the European law.
A spokesperson said that due to practical limitations it would be difficult to enforce this model; “basically it perpetuates a monopoly in sports betting. The curtailment of advertising campaigns, an extensive ban on live betting, uncertain taxation limits and the prohibition on poker and casino games is not in line with public veracity and hamper private gaming companies to conduct the businesses in a proper manner.”
“Past studies from other European Union countries and especially Germany clearly indicate that a monopolized regulatory framework to internet gambling is doomed to failure before its implementation. The proposed channelling and regulation of current jurisdictions will not be reached, even with the proposed Internet regulations in place.”
Alternatively, Schleswig-Holstein’s bill creates a constructive environment for suitable regulation, with Europe’s premier internet casinos recognizing their social responsibility to the local communities they’re operating in. All licensing and legal obligations would be adhered to, in particular their tax accountability. On the back of this legislation, if properly policed nurtures efficient player protection and protects minors, last but not least it aims to prevent compulsive gambling and match fixing in sports.”
Many representatives gave their feedback and came out in strong support of Schleswig-Holstein approach to the regulation of internet gambling:
Bwin.Party’s Digital, Jörg Wacker said: “Schleswig-Holstein has now laid the foundation with its new bill and hopefully it would serve as a good example to other German states. This bill is in accordance with EU law; it’s in sync with current market trends and the Internet age. Various key issues proposed by the Minister Presidents last week to be implemented will fail just as Germany’s expiring monopoly mode. The 16% tax rate proposed on all betting sites will not be conducive and won’t be able to offer players a competitive product. Not including poker and casino sites, this would allow the black market and rogue sports betting sites to operate in this segment. In effect, the Federal State’s aim by means of ensuring player protection and to combat unethical business practices would fail miserably.”
Dr. Peter Reinhardt from Betfair had the following to say: “In order to succeed, it’s imperative that gaming regulations should comply with current market trends. A legal offer in Germany must take into account a consumer and his/her needs first. Or else, there’s a risk that a Euro 5 to 8 billion market will carry on side stepping the government. The Schleswig-Holstein bill is a first in our internet gambling history and it enables us to implement a model that is in the best interests of the player, the state and sport and the internet casinos.”
Sven Stiel, a representative for PokerStars said the following: “People are very enthusiastic about Poker. If it’s played on ProSieben or SPORT1, in BILD or at DPA, poker has finally arrived in Germany living rooms and it is here to stay. On the other hand, not everyone knows this. Nonetheless, the figures speak for it: there are more than 4,000,000 Germans who play poker.
Sadly, the Minister Presidents want this market to stay unregulated; therefore every amateur player is against the law. Schleswig-Holstein understands the need of German players and will offer them a realistic form of channelling. PokerStars is one of the very first poker sites that will be applying for a license in Schleswig-Holstein. With the current legislation in place it’s a walk in the park to ensure proper player protection and to create employment”
Neale Deeley said the following on William Hill’s behalf: “Regulations must be properly weighed based on its achievements. One of the key aspects here is to ensure that German players who wager online do so with internet casinos licensed by the state. Any hindrance to this be it via product restrictions or excessive tax regimes, will only propagate the continuation of rogue sites, thereby impacting negatively on player protection and industry lucidity and accountability. The proposed Schleswig-Holstein bill fully facilitates and promotes those objectives, and in addition will generate tax revenues and create employment opportunities across a wide range of business sectors.”[addtoany]