The Netherlands in the News — Weekly Round-up for June 22, 2018

Dutch Authority Clamps Down On Loot Boxes

Encourages gambling, Kansspelautoriteit says

The Dutch gambling regulator, Kansspelauthoriteit (KSA), begins its next phase in the clamp down on loot boxes later this week.

The action follows an investigation into the practice from November 2017 to April 2018 in which the regulator concluded that loot boxes encourage a gambling mindset in youth and requires games companies to make adjustments which would include disallowing trading or selling of loot boxes for cash outside of the game.

The investigation found four of the ten loot boxes from popular games that were studied were in conflict with Dutch gambling law.

KSA said it will begin monitoring games companies this week to ensure that adjustments were sufficient to ensure loot boxes could no longer be characterised as games of chance as outlined in the Betting and Gaming Act.

The KSA suggested adjustments might include providers replacing loot boxes in their game with ‘direct buy’ or virtual items allowing purchasers to choose what they buy.

There will be strict penalties for those that do not make the required adjustments, administrative fines of up to Euro 830,000 could be imposed or 10 percent of the company’s worldwide turnover, the KSA warned.

Dutch Authority Updates Lower House On Remote Gambling Progress

Despite no indication of when the Senate will address the draft remote gaming bill

The Dutch Gambling authority, Kansspelautoriteit (KSA), has communicated progress on the draft Remote Gambling Bill to the House of Representatives Lower House.

The letter details extra measures implemented to negate gambling addiction that include oversight of license holders obligations.

Other updates to the bill include the requirement for foreign providers, not established in the European Union, to establish a local presence in order to be eligible for license application.

In addition, licensees will be required to appoint a representative in the field of addiction prevention in the Netherlands.

Other considerations include a closer look at the separation between games and games of chance, the KSA said, in terms of reducing the risk of gambling addiction primarily in young people.

The bill on remote games of chance currently languishes in the Dutch Senate. The House of Representatives passed the bill in July 2016.