Saturday March 19,2016 : GERMAN LANDE SEEK WAYS AROUND ONLINE GAMBLING IMPASSE (Update)
But will doubling the number of sports betting licenses appease the European Commission?
The confused mess that is German online gambling legalization, criticised by the European Commission and threatened with legal action from frustrated operators appeared to be moving into a new "quick-fix" phase Friday, although there remains little hope for anything beyond expanded online sports betting (i.e. no casino or poker activity will be sanctioned).
The heads of Germany's sixteen lande or provinces met in Berlin last week and opted to try and appease a threatening European Commission by agreeing to double the number of sports betting licenses on offer under the interstate gambling treaty to 40… but to go no further than that in liberalising the very significant German online gambling market.
Doubling the number of licenses would ensure that all 35 current applicants at the advanced vetting stage could achieve licensed status, one trade association pointed out.
Whilst the decision continues to exclude online casino or poker activity, it may bring frustrated aspirant German market sports betting operators on-side and thus remove the threat of operator-inspired legal actions, which has been holding up the issue of the sports betting licenses currently on offer, industry observers have noted.
Whether the European Commission, or for that matter the European Court of Justice, will be satisfied with this solution remains to be seen