02/09/2012 : BELGIAN ONLINE GAMBLING LICENSES FOR MAJOR OPERATORS
Pokerstars and Circus Groupe collaboration pays off
Circus Groupe and PokerStars have jointly announced that Pokerstars.be has been granted a Belgian online poker licence under the Casino de Namur A+ licence. The site was authorised in 2011 by the Belgian Gaming Commission in a test phase, and now has been granted a full operational licence.
Etienne Marique, chairman of the Belgian Gaming Commission, said: “This is an important step forward for the regulation of online gambling. Not only is the legal framework delivering the possibility for operators to offer their online games of chance, but from an economics point of view gambling operators are given opportunities in Belgium. And all this in an environment that protects players more than illegal websites do – for example, excluded players cannot play at licensed websites and players are protected by an average hourly loss restriction.”
Jean Christophe Choffray, head of online gaming at Circus Groupe, said: “We are delighted that with the great efforts and co-operation of the Gaming Board we have been able to become fully regulated in the Belgium market.”
The Belgian Gaming Commission has indicated that beginning this year only fully-licensed operators will be permitted to offer online gaming services in the country and the Commission will actively seek to prevent unlicensed operators from accessing Belgian players.
PokerStars.be is jointly operated with Casino de Namur and is the largest site to be authorised and operational in Belgium. Belgian players are able to play in all PokerStars international tournaments as well as cash games, providing them with a wide range of competition.
“PokerStars is proud to be among the first fully-licensed operators in Belgium,” said Guy Templer, PokerStars’ head of business development. “We are delighted to be able to offer a locally licensed product to Belgian players through our partnership with Circus Groupe.
"This furthers our goal to obtain licences in all newly-regulated markets.”
PokerStars’ has also been successful in obtaining licensing in Italy, France, Estonia and Denmark.