New ideas as government reviews outdated gambling legislation
Swiss gambling laws – some dating back to 1923 – are to be reviewed in an exercise which could see the government moving from an illegal-but-tolerant position on internet gambling to a licence-and-regulate stance.
The review by the Federal Council follows a public consultation on the issue in 2012.
The publication Ubersetzer reports that new regulations will include roulette, blackjack and other gambling via the Internet, along with small poker tournaments outside of casinos.
Announcing the review Wednesday, the Council said regulation will better protect consumers and enable existing licensed casinos to apply to offer real-money Internet gambling services to appropriately aged gamblers.
Consumer protection will be beefed up, with the cantons obliged to take measures against problem gambling and provide treatment for people with gambling issues.
The changes the Council has in mind will please lottery winners, who will no longer be required to pay tax on winnings.
As with most new regulatory regimes, the Swiss changes will come with more modern laws that have punitive measures against unlicensed operators, including possibly ISP blocking to lock out illegal operators outside the country.
Strict anti-money laundering regulations are envisaged
The idea of a consultative commission to combat addictive gambling, proposed by opposition parties, was not taken up.
A timeframe has yet to be set for the development and implementation of the new laws, which observers said could take some time.
Online Casino News Courtesy of Infopowa