Press Releases

Juncker’s ‘Political’ Commission Leaves Gambling Reforms to the Courts

07.12.2017

EU-based and EU-regulated gambling operators oppose today’s decision of the Juncker Commission to discontinue its work to combat infringements of the EU single market rules in the gambling sector which has well over 20 million EU consumers. With a constant stream of court cases, over 30 consistent rulings issued by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) and further cases pending it is evident that the online gambling sector, an inherently cross-border sector, is rife with EU law infringements and that consumers are clicking on unregulated, non-EU gambling websites. This Commission decision also conflicts with the EU’s own self-stated policy priorities, in particular the EU’s Digital Single Market programme, and is at odds with concerted efforts to enhance consumer safety and combat money-laundering and match-fixing ahead of next year’s FIFA World Cup in Russia.   The infringement cases which the Commission has today officially closed without further action...

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Online Gambling: Court Rejects Non-Transparent Licensing Regimes and Prohibits Enforcement Measures

22.06.2017

Today, the CJEU manifestly ruled that enforcement actions against EU licensed operators unlawfully excluded from national licensing processes are prohibited and not in compliance with EU law (case Unibet International (C-49/16). The Court confirmed the obligation on Member States to organise transparent licensing processes and rejected EU countries’ discretion to impose enforcement measures. This ruling comes at a crucial time for countries like the Netherlands, were national legislation that has been found incompatible with the Treaties, is enforced.   The Court of Justice of the EU (CJEU) found that Hungary violated the fundamental freedom to provide services guaranteed under Art 56 of the EU Treaty (TFEU) prohibiting a cross-border operator licensed in the EU to lawfully provide its services in Hungary, by failing to organise a licensing tender published according to objective, transparent, non-discriminatory and proportionate criteria. This has been precised in para. 42 stating that, where it may be...

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