Gaming in Holland Newsletter – “Dutch Remote Gaming Act delayed by one month” …and more!

Updated: Feb 3

Dutch government will not tax illegal gambling operators


On November 17, the Dutch Lower House adopted a motion requesting the government to ensure that all operators that are active in the Netherlands – whether licensed or not – will be subject to Dutch tax legislation from January 1, 2021 onward.

Last week, State Secretary of Finance Hans Vijlbrief responded, saying that while the government was “sympathetic” to the motion’s aims, the Lower House’s request could not be implemented without a change in primary legislation, which would be impossible on such short notice.


Moreover, the tax base of Dutch gambling tax – in cases the operator is liable – is said operator’s gross gaming revenue. Practically speaking, it would be all but impossible for the Dutch revenue service to determine the gross gaming revenue achieved in the Netherlands by an unlicensed operator.


Because of these reasons, the government would not implement the motion, Vijlbief said. Thus, in cases of illegal gambling, the player rather than the operator would remain liable for satisfying Dutch gambling tax liabilities.


Dutch Lower House questions Holland Casino sponsorship deal as redundancies loom

Following reports that state-owned Holland Casino concluded a multi-million sponsorship deal with both Dutch professional football leagues while simultaneously receiving emergency Covid-19 relief and preparing to lay off staff, MP Christ Stoffer (SGP) submitted parliamentary questions to the Minister of Finance, questioning whether the sponsorship deal was a responsible expenditure of community funds.


In response to these question, State Secretary of Finance Hans Vijlbrief wrote that the sponsorship deal was intended to provide the state-owned operator with a solid starting position in the soon-to-be-regulated online gambling market, adding that other firms that received emergency support because of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic also continue to make commercial investments.


Despite the government clearly backing Holland Casino, the operator’s reputation may have suffered as a result of this unfortunate confluence of events.


Covid-19 pandemic accelerates Europe-wide shift to online gambling

Despite a significant drop in online revenue during Q2 as a result of the cancellation of major European sports, Europe’s online gambling revenue is expected to increase by 7% in 2020, according to figures published by the European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA) in partnership with H2 Gambling Capital.


Land-based gambling revenue is expected to drop by 33% this year – from €74.1bn GGR in 2019 to €49.6bn in 2020 – due to the shuttering of land-based establishments.

Looking ahead, the steady growth of Europe’s online gambling market is expected to continue, with online GGR expected to grow approximately 7% yearly and reach 33.6% of Europe’s total gambling revenue by 2025.


This trend underscores the necessity to regulate online gambling in the Netherlands as quickly as possible in order to head off the further growth of the black market.


Upcoming events

The following events may be of interest to the GiH community.


Events

  • SiGMA Europe has been rescheduled to 13 – 15 April, 2021.

  • The third edition of CasinoBeats Summit will return to Malta in from May 18 – 20, 2021, as part of Spring iGaming Week organized in partnership with KPMG and Gaming Malta.

  • The Betting on Sports America conference and expo has been scheduled for 8 – 10 June, 2021 and will bring together all the major players in the fast-growing North American sports betting industry.

  • ICE London 2021 will now take place 29 June – July 1, 2021, with the co-located iGB Affiliate London taking place 1 – 2 July.

  • iGB Live 2021 has also been moved to 28 September – 1 October, 2021, but will still take place in Amsterdam!

Webinars and virtual events

  • Mindway AI has published an on-demand webinar on player profiling and efficient responsible gaming interventions.

  • G4 and KPMG have joined forces to offer a safer gambling training for customer support professionals on 28 January, 2021.

  • Join the iGaming Next Power Hour every Friday @3pm CET for a short, compact, educational and social weekly digital gathering with some of the brightest and most connected minds of the industry.

“Dutch Remote Gaming Act delayed by one month”

According to sources in The Hague, the entry into force of the Dutch Remote Gaming Act will have to be postponed due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic and the yet unpublished advice of the Council of State on the Act’s secondary legislation.


Other sources confirm the delay and claim that the most likely scenario is that the entry into force of the Remote Gaming Act will be postponed by a single month to April 1, 2021. The opening of the regulated online market would likely be postponed as well: to October 1, 2021.

Such a postponement would mean that prospective license holders must wait until April 1, 2021 to submit their remote license applications to the Netherlands Gambling Authority.

As a likely concession to applicants, the certification of their game systems must now be finalized by either June or July of next year, rather than prior to the submission of their applications.


Both the Netherlands Gambling Authority and Ministry of Justice declined to comment.


Other news

The Netherlands Gambling Authority has announced a new webinar for land-based operators on creating and managing the technical connection with the CRUKS national exclusion database.


Once again, the Netherlands Gambling Authority has promised leniency towards idealistic bingo initiatives that are being organized under lockdown conditions.


Fonds Gehandicaptensport has launched a one-off lottery: “De Grote Droomloterij.”


The European Casino Association, the European Lotteries, and the World Tote Association expressed their support for the EU’s Digital Services Act package and joined forces in the Alliance Against Illegal Gambling.


Flutter Entertainment has been ordered to pay up to $1.3bn after the Kentucky Supreme Court sensationally reinstated a prior 2015 ruling relating to the firm’s The Stars Group subsidiary.


Spain’s Ministry of Consumer Affairs is to launch a public consultation on another draft Royal Decree designed to make the country’s online gambling market safer.


Malta’s General Workers Union (GWU) has ended its industrial action against Evolution Gaming over its restructuring after the union agreed an out-of-court settlement with the firm.


Fantasy football operator Sorare has gained a new Strategic Advisor in FC Barcelona and Spanish national team defender Gerard Piqué.


The Rugby Football Union (RFU), Welsh Rugby Union (WRU) and Scottish Rugby Union (SRU) have announced a commercial partnership with the UK National Lottery.

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