The 9th International Conference and Forum on Gaming Industry and Public Welfare

Mr. Pierre Mangion will give a presentation at the “The 9th International Conference and Forum on Gaming Industry and Public Welfare” in China on the 16th November about the topic “Challenges and Opportunities facing the Gaming / Lottery Industry”.

The presentation planned for the Public Welfare Conference in China to be held in November 2012 gives an overview of the latest legislative and regulatory developments in the online gaming and gambling sector in general by giving a country to country synopsis of the different developments regarding new and proposed reforms in the most significant gaming industries of Europe.

Cyprus is considered a gaming market still under construction where casinos and slots are banned creating a gap in the Turkish occupied part of island¸ where 20 casinos are already built.  It is considered that opening of the market would be a challenge for Cyprus.  Since June 2012 the only games that are now legal in Cyprus are traditional sports betting with online bookmakers and lotteries.  The law introduced in 2012 prohibited gambling services such as online casinos¸ betting exchanges and bets on greyhound racing.

On the other hand¸ following the current financial crisis Greece is experiencing¸ gaming is considered to be a much needed tax revenue for Greece that expects to earn an estimated 625 million plus Euros at the end of 2012. Legislation as applied in France and Italy and in other European areas is most likely to be the kind of guiding regulations that the Greek government will be basing its framework on.

France and Ireland remain legalized in a comprehensive manner whilst Germany becomes more and more under fire from EU considering the ambiguity of a regional monopoly in 16 federal states for the organization of sports betting and lotteries¸ while the organization of betting on horse races and the operation of slot machines and casinos is liberalized.  In mid-August legislators of Schleswig-Holstein announced that they have finally managed to create draft legislation that if adopted would align the province with the German federal online gambling treaty that was adopted by 14 other provinces on July 1st. The state wants to harmonize the two legislations in the new draft.  The European Court’s decision on how to proceed is expected to be made in November 2012

The Italian gambling scene remains a hotly debated market especially since it is considered to be one of Europe’s online gambling leaders. Italy is expected to register the most lucrative market growth for legal gambling in Europe registering a rise from €400m in 2008 to nearly €1.6 billion in 2012.  This year two important regulations were launched by AAMS with a green light from European Commission – one referring to betting exchange allowing Italian operators to deal with foreign based players and the second concerning the approval process for skill games¸ fixed odds games of chance and non-tournament card games.

In Denmark uniform and lowered tax rates for Internet gambling were introduced to provide an incentive for companies to engage the Danish market¸ whereas in the Netherlands the gaming and betting legislation was grouped under one regulatory body.  This single Gaming Authority aims at liberalizing the offline market in 2015 and make remote gambling licences available by 2013 or 2014.  The catalysts for change have been taken in account so now we can expect future developments in the Dutch and Danish gaming industry.

Other countries like Sweden¸ Norway¸ Poland¸ Austria¸ Malta¸ Belgium¸ the UK and Luxembo