Germany Grants Three Online Gambling Licenses Valid Until 2018

Published Thursday, May 03, 2012 -

The European Union has been having its share of economic ups and downs recently and many countries within the matrix are trying to find ways out of their current financial problems. One method some nations are looking into is the regulation and taxation of the online gambling industry. Countries such as Spain are taking their time licensing online gambling operators which some critics believe is the wrong approach considering the funds that could be accumulated by the government is needed sooner rather than later.

Germany which has an estimated sports betting market to be worth at least 5 billion euros ($6.6 billion) is still largely considered ‘illegal’. The German situation is complicated in so much as of the sixteen states in Germany only one, the northern state of Schleswig Holstein, has created a set of rules and taxation schedule that is at all favourable for online gambling operators to participate in. The other fifteen jurisdictions have held steadfastly to more restrictive laws. These laws are said to favour the old monopolies run by the state. The European Commission has raised concerns over the planned legislation that runs contrary to the E.U. rules dictating free e-commerce among member nations.

Finally the first licenses to offer online gambling in Germany have been granted. The state of Schleswig Holstein has giving its blessing to three operators granting them permits that will remain valid until 2018. U.K. online gambling operator Betfair will be able to offer sports betting in Germany as well as Germany’s Jaxx AG and the state lottery. The law which the centre-right coalition government of Schleswig Holstein brought into play last September asks for a 20 percent tax on gross profits rather than the greater tax on turnover. The Ministry of the Interior said it expected to grant licenses for poker and casino gaming shortly which other states intend to ban.

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