Greek Government Wants Online Gambling Changes

Published Friday, January 15, 2016 -
Greek Government Wants Online Gambling Changes

Greece has had its fair share of monetary problems in the last few years and as part of the solution to a dwindling revenue stream the current government is looking at reforming its online gambling laws. The recently elected Syriza government is rethinking the whole system for licensing of online gambling operators that are headquartered offshore. The previous regulatory platform has failed for to make any progress in returning funds to the Greek government’s empty coffers. It has been officially stated that the government will replace existing regulations with more internationally friendly conditions for online casinos with the hope of attracting the funds from licensing and taxation.

The 2011 Gambling Act made land-based slot machines and online gambling legal in an attempt to raise funds from these sources. This Act saw the government give twenty four interim licences to internet gambling operators, and made provisions for a permanent licensing system to be created. However in November 2012, the government warned the holders of previously granted interim licences to start to withdraw their services. Many of the firms which hold these interim licenses were concerned about the new attempt to monopolize the government run gambling service provider OPAP and by the Court of Justice of the European Union ruling in January 2013 that OPAP’s monopoly was unlawful. Some of the operators have since left the Greek gambling market after seeing little movement in the promised reforms.

As yet nothing has materialized in hard copy from the government regarding these regulatory changes and the slow action is what has kept the Greek online gambling industry from growing. The new government has promised to somehow resolve the financial problems in Greece and the reform of the online gambling environment is one of the most important aspects of Syriza’s plan. Saying that the government will make positive changes in their internet gambling regulatory platform is one thing making it happen is another.







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