EC Chief Outlines Online Gambling Agenda

EC Chief Outlines Online Gambling Agenda
EC Chief Outlines Online Gambling Agenda By: Joe Valentino, Thursday July 5th 20120 Comments   Email   PrintIt seems that online gambling regulation is back on the active agenda of the European Commission (EC), which is the enforcement arm of the European Union (EU). The EC head, Michel Barnier, stated that the Commission will publish an action plan in autumn this year. The plan will provide details of the proposed actions to stop unregulated online gambling. The action plan will outline measures to clamp down on illegal online gambling websites, including those hosted in offshore havens. The Commission will also propose measures to regulate and supervise licensed online gaming sites. Barnier’s address to the European Parliament last week made it abundantly clear that non-compliant national regulatory regimes were also on the radar of the EC. There are 9 pending infringement procedures with the Commission. 28 new complaints have been filed against the gambling regulation of 12 different Member States. Barnier said that the Commission will reactivate pending infringements and initiate the processing of complaints against Member States whose gambling regulation is in violation of EU policy. The Commission would first contact all the concerned Member States, remind them of the applicable rules and also urge that the violations are rectified in accordance with current EU law. He added, “If blatant infringements persist, I will not hesitate to propose to my colleagues that the appropriate proceedings be taken or re-launched.” The EC has the full backing of the European Parliament, which has adopted a report in November 2011 that calls on the Commission to pursue those infringement proceedings that have been pending since 2008. That report also reminds the Commission that it is a ‘guardian of the Treaties’. Therefore it is incumbent on the EC to act swiftly upon receipt of complaints about violations of the freedoms enshrined in the Treaties. Barnier also touched upon some policy suggestions in his speech. He stressed that the regulatory framework should enable licensed online gambling operators to offer attractive products to their customers. Otherwise the gamblers will wager at the illegal and unregulated sites. Harmonization across Europe was also an important issue because almost 7 million Europeans gamble online. It is essential to develop a common base of principles and measures of protection so that all citizens are protected, wherever they reside and wherever they wager. Barnier repeated pretty much the same thing while addressing a meeting in Gibraltar. This indicates the seriousness with which the EC is now showing on the issue of online gambling. Sigrid Ligne, secretary general of trade association EGBA commented that Barnier’s speech marked a major shift in EU policy, since infringement proceedings were virtually on hold since 2008. Earlier the EGBA had released a document detailing what it expects from the EC. News Item Tools  Email     Print     Digg     Del.icio.us    StumbleUpon Comments  Add Comment Add Comment You must be signed-in to add a comment: – Sign-in – Register More News Casino Tropez Offers Cops N’ Bandits Online SlotEC Chief Outlines Online Gambling AgendaVegas Palms Accumulator Slots TourneyAnother Football Online Slot From PlaytechVirgin Casino Monopoly Plus Online Promo

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