EGBA Welcomes Dutch Gambling Regulations but Warns of Channelization Issues
After the COVID-induced delay, the Dutch Remote Gambling Act came into effect on April 1. The European Gambling and Betting Association has welcomed the move but warned that Dutch authorities should work towards a greater channelisation level.
As of April 1, various operators and gambling venues can start applying for a Dutch gambling license. The Dutch gambling authority, Kansspelautoriteit (KSA), expects the remote gambling market to open on October 1, giving them enough time to process all applications. KSA said that they have received 40 domestic and foreign applications and expect to give out 35 licenses this year.
EGBA said that it’s “pleased that the new regulations focus on achieving a high level of consumer protection and acknowledge the consumer-centric nature of online gambling by allowing a broad scope of online gambling products”.
However, EGBA states that there are still concerns about the implementation process. Namely, the association points out that the target level of channelisation – 80% within three years – might be harder to achieve. Channelisation refers to the percentage of players that play on licensed gambling and betting sites.
According to EGBA, the Dutch KSA should work on increasing its efforts when it comes to channelisation. The association cites the Danish market example, where more than 90% of all players now play on licensed sites. Especially worrying to EGBA is a survey conducted among Dutch players, which has shown that 41% of these players do not care whether they’re playing on a licensed gambling site or not. This indicates that there’s a lot of work to be done in regard to educating and motivating people to switch to legal venues.
While the arrival of the much-needed legislation is good news, a more ambitious channelisation plan will have to be undertaken by the Dutch KSA.