Netherlands Will Most Likely Issue iGaming Licenses From 2020
The Netherlands will soon have online gambling licenses up for grabs as the country’s Remote Gambling Bill was cleared by the Dutch Senate.
This approval comes after a three and a half year journey from the lower house of the Dutch Parliament. In the final stretch, the country will now reorganize its online gambling market according to the bill and will most likely start processing new licenses by 2020.
Many gaming analysts predict that iGaming operators will be able to apply for gaming licenses in early 2020 as they expect the new gaming regulations to be implemented before Jan 1, 2021. iGaming operators who are interested to enter the newly regulated market must apply for a license from Kansspelautoriteit, the Dutch regulatory body.
Though international online gambling operators have operated in Dutch jurisdiction for a long time, this new license will give them an actual legal presence in the market. With 1.86 million Dutch citizens engaging in gambling from 2016 to 2018, this is a big market for operators to tap into.
Dutch authorities have been cracking down on illegal online gambling from some time now. However, the current gambling laws don’t give them enough bite. They are only given the ability to level fine those who target Dutch customers illegally. However, they don’t have the chance to collect those fines since the violators are all based in other countries.
Kansspelautoriteit – Gets More Authority
This is why the implementation of a blackout period for those operators that serviced Dutch gamblers illegally was a major topic during the vote. The original idea was to place a two-year block on operators that have operated in the Netherlands without a license. This was given a lot of support and as a result, blacklisted operators will have to wait two years before they can apply for an iGaming license.
Besides the block, the new bill requires online gambling companies to implement policies that will lower the risks of problem gambling and protect their customers from frauds and scams. This includes programs like self-exclusion for a period of time, so that Dutch players won’t end up becoming bankrupt or addicted.
Sander Dekker, the Dutch Minister for Legal Protection, was one of the driving forces behind the bill. He said that he was very happy to see the bill finally approved and stated that the Netherlands would now be able to ensure that online gamblers would have a safe and responsible environment for them to gamble.