Poland set to regulate online gambling

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RIP Brian
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POSITIVE SIGNALS FROM POLAND

Senior government minister hints strongly at a regulated online gambling policy

The Deputy Minister of Finance in Poland has reportedly made a public statement this week that the EU country plans to regulate and license online gambling, and this could happen as early as the second half of 2008.

Minister Marek Kapica was quoted in Polish media reports as being pragmatic on the issue, saying: "We cannot control this process anyway and it is better that the budget at least derives some revenues from it."

Kapica's ministry is apparently drafting legislation to introduce a regulatory regime, and this will be sent to the European Commission to ensure that it meets EU requirements for the free passage of goods and services between EU member states as required in the trading bloc's treaty.
 

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RIP Brian
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Update

POLISH INTEREST IN ONLINE GAMBLING CONFIRMED

Business journal reports factors that influenced the move to legalise

The Warsaw Business Journal has confirmed last week's news that the Polish government is about to take a more pragmatic and positive view on the regulation of online gambling (see previous InfoPowa report)

The Journal confirms that Deputy Finance Minister Jacek Kapica has intimated that the government plans to legalise online gambling by the end of the (2008) year, a radical change in direction from the position taken by the previous conservative Law and Justice (PiS) government, which ruled against online betting after Ministry of Finance analysts argued that the cost to the state would be too great.

The analysts claimed that any budget revenues from online gambling would be lower than expected, whereas the cost of regulating the industry would be high. However, according to Merrill Lynch estimates, gross online gambling revenues could reach as high as US$48 (zł.106) billion by 2010, making it an extremely lucrative business.

Minister Kapica had previously opined: "We cannot control this process anyway and it is better that the Budget at least derives some revenue from it."

In speculating on the issue, the Polish press has suggested that the government's change of heart was influenced by last year's European Court of Justice ruling that Italy may not use criminal law to ban fellow EU member states-based online gambling companies from attracting Italian players.
 
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