In a recent press conference in Brussels, Michel Barnier, the EU Internal Market and Services Commissioner, presented a Green Paper, outlining online gambling in the internal market, adopted by the EU Commission.
The European Commission shows the annual revenue of internet gambling in 2008 was over €6 billion, and expects the industry to double by the year 2013. To ensure such positive dynamics in the development of cross-border online gaming services, a clear legal framework is needed. To effectively protect all EU citizens, individual member states gambling laws must be brought under a unified EU legal framework.
The main intent of EC’s Green Paper is “to provide the basis of concrete facts and a picture of the current situation on the EU online gambling market and the different national regulatory models.”
In particular, German gambling laws and the regulation of online gambling in the country, are of special importance, due to the large size of the German gambling market as well as the current political atmosphere. The German associations of the video gambling machine industry were therefore invited to comment on the Green Paper at the next meeting of the EU Commission.
German along with the central European Association of video gambling machine industry, EUROMAT, is expected to clear up any misconception within the Green Paper related to fixed-income money-game offerings throughout EU.
Factors falling into the Commission’s scope of interest include the organization of online lottery services, enforcement of existing legislation concerning online casinos, communication and payment solutions between the consumer and the gaming operator.
In addition to ongoing consultations, EU Commission will host expert workshops on specific topics, scheduled for July 31.