The Netherlands Gambling Authority Announces Delay of New Online Gambling Regulations

Nov 21

The Netherlands Gambling Authority, otherwise known as the Kansspelautoriteit (KSA), has declared that its plans to introduce new online gambling licensing and regulatory framework would be delayed by six months.

The updated roll-out schedule was made public as the country moves forward with its efforts to enforce the new regulations called for under the Remote Gambling Act (KOA) which were approved in February 2019.

On November 15, Netherlands Minister of Justice and Security Sander Dekker expressed the delay to the Dutch Parliament. Because of this, the Koa would be implemented on January 1, 2021. At that point, a six-month application window for operator licensing would become open, meaning no online licenses would be issued until some point after July 1, 2021.

Currently, all forms of online gambling are considered unlawful by the Dutch authorities. However, many of the country’s citizens gamble online through sites that are found in other countries.

According to Dekker’s ministry, the Netherlands’ regulatory plans would, by and large, depend on two pillars. The first is the legalization of online gambling itself, while the second is the addition of more addictive-gambling protections to Dutch law. The latter would also become applicable to the country’s land-based gambling forms.

The delay announced also provides the Ksa with a precious chance to fine-tune its regulatory framework. When the primary Remote Gambling Act was passed, the Dutch Senate launched four motions, or amendments, that also needed to be tackled. Dekker said this added to the delay.

The KSA also published updated information on the applications process. The application fee would be €45,000 (or $49,856) per online site, and operators may apply for any of four different online (remote) betting forms:

  • Casino games where players play against the license holder
  • Casino games where players play against each other
  • Betting on events during a sports competition or on the outcome of a sports competition
  • Bets on horse racing and hard trotting results

In the meantime, the Ksa would most likely continue its series of investigations and evaluations against online operators that were found to have targeted Dutch gamblers. Since the Koa’s passage, a number of operators have been slapped with fines that have come to hundreds of thousands of euros.

Firms targeted include PokerStars, Unibet, Casumo, Casino.com, LeoVegas, and Royal Panda. In most of these situations, the penalized operators were found to offer Dutch-language service and support, utilize Netherlands-based banking services, or include other distinct Dutch elements.