New Dutch Gaming Act to be Enforced Next Year

Jun 11

Netherlands - The chairman of the Kansspelautoriteit (KSA), René Jansen, recently gave a timeframe for the implementation of the new Remote Gaming Act, saying this will come into force on July 1, 2020.

He discussed this at the recent Gaming in Holland Conference, explaining that this particular timeframe would allow operators to apply for licenses and online gambling to start in early 2021.

It certainly has been a long time coming for Holland. The first proposals were put forth in 2011 but it wasn’t until in February of 2019 that the Remote Gaming Act was accepted. The act allows online gambling but under stringent conditions. At the moment, there are no provisions in Holland for “games of chance” but this will now be modified as the KSA starts to offer permits.

Before, Holland had leaned on the appeal of its casinos to rule out a need for online gambling, but these plans have since changed. The idea of privatizing the successful Holland Casino has been pulled, despite eight years of preparation, hanging all interested operators out to dry.

The Remote Gaming Act, however, will need a slight change to internal law, as the Ministry of Justice and Security hands over the reins to the KSA.

Although founded in 2012, the Netherlands Gambling Authority has only started to stretch its muscles just recently. In March, it raised its minimum illegal online gambling sanctions from €150,000 ($191,000) to €200,000 ($255,000), which corresponds with the approval of the Remote Gaming Act.

In April, the online website Casumo, regulated by the Malta Gaming Authority, and UK/Gibraltar-based Casino.com were handed fines of €310,000 ($351,000) for allowing the illegally targeting of Netherlands citizens.

At the conference, Jansen asked potential operators to complete the applications form on the KSA website so that they could assess interest in licenses.

“For the KSA, it is important to know how many license applications we can expect in the future. This allows us to organize the organization well. We have an interest in this, but that also applies to the companies that request a license,” said Jansen. About 300 operators have shown an interest in operating in the Dutch market.

Jansen was keen to offer operators an olive branch at the conference by setting out the timeline, although he emphasized that work still needed to be done. “Such an operation requires a lot from an organization with the size of the KSA. But we do everything we can to get this done.”