Thursday May 30,2013 :  EU INTERNAL MARKET COMMITTEE DISCUSSES ONLINE GAMBLING
 
“Gambling is an economic activity of a special nature…" says EPP spokesperson
 
The European Union parliament's Committee on Internal Market and Consumer Protection discussed the regulation of online gambling Thursday, with European People's Party spokesperson Sirpa Pietikäinen MEP commenting:
 
“Online gambling must be accompanied with strong means of consumer protection. Gambling is an economic activity of a special nature, where restrictions are needed for consumer protection, fraud prevention, the fight against money laundering and the preservation of public order and public health.
 
“This can be achieved by respecting the principle of subsidiarity where Member States have the right to determine how the offer of online gambling services is organised and regulated. Simultaneously, common principles of consumer protection have to be improved,” said Pietikäinen.
 
She suggested that reliable electronic identification is needed to ensure a high level of protection for players, particularly minors. Together with restricting gaming accounts to one per person, this is also an important means to fight against money laundering, she claimed.
 
"Online gambling may involve a greater risk of addiction than traditional offline gambling. Therefore any customer self-excluding or surpassing their gambling limits from one gambling operator should have the option to be automatically self-excluded from all other licensed gambling operators," Pietikäinen said.
 
“It should also be taken into account that the fight against match fixing requires more effective cooperation between public authorities, law enforcement agencies, the sport industry, gambling operators and gambling regulators.”