Dutch newspaper fires up speculation that online gambling may be on the agenda of new government
The Dutch newspaper Telegraaf revved up online gamblers and observers alike this week with a speculative report that a change of government could be bringing about a revision of hitherto monopolistic and negative policies on internet gambling.
The newspaper briefly reported, quoting unidentified sources within government that moves are afoot to legalise, licence and regulate internet gambling, with estimates that the market could be worth up to Euro 270 million in tax yields for the cash-strapped government.
There has been no official confirmation of the report, but liberalising moves in other European nations like France, Belgium and Italy, along with the prospect of tax contributions, could be motivating factors.
Observers were speculating this week that, given its monopolisitic history, the Dutch approach will possible follow the French model, which strives to keep as much of the business in-country as EU policies will allow.
In August this year a study by the Dutch Justice Ministry proposed that the government adopt a more open approach online gambling, suggesting that a limited number of licenses might be given to online poker sites.
The report focused primarily on internet poker, excluding other forms of internet gambling such as online casinos, online sportsbooks, and internet bingo from any liberalisation initiatives.