Gambling Legislation in the Western European Countries


In the Western European cultures, gambling is an essential element. With the development and diversity of the games getting more modernized, the more beautiful they get. The casino venues, masterminds of the games, and the big amount of money earned also being part of the improvement. The Western European countries have been developing slightly different from the Eastern European countries. Therefore, their kinds of legislation slightly differ in the governance of games such as those found in

There must be legal governance to make sure that some complications that may arise do not affect the whole gambling process. Due to the sophistication, a lot of companies have joined this industry to yield more cash. The commercialization of the industry, therefore, calls for clear regulation.

Gambling in the UK

The 2005 Gambling Act gives the United Kingdom’s Gambling Commission powers that include governing, controlling and regulating the gaming activities in the Kingdom. Being the leading gambling market in Europe, it serves an example to several other countries which are part and parcel of the continent. Its jurisdiction is perceived to be the strongest in the continent making more countries follow its structure and model of performance. Since the year 2014, several changes have been made which enable the jurisdiction to give licenses to the operators and the gamers. The significant feature of the jurisdiction is that it is made to increase the number of options while gaming.

Gambling in France

France is also known for having a large gambling market just like the UK. The developments in France are known to have commenced in the early 17th century. It is a legal operation in the country; however, the online operators are not permitted to provide any games. The lack of permission led to the exit of the game operators from the country creating a wider operation of online unlicensed gambling. In addition to the lack of permission, high taxation was imposed on the operators. In 2009, three online games were legalized; Sports betting, horse racing, and poker. In the preceding year, ARJEL, the French Regulatory Authority for the online game activities, was introduced. Its purpose is to issue gaming licenses to the online operators.

Gambling in Italy

Gambling in Europe arose in the days of the Roman Empire when the Aristocrats used to pass time by playing in Venice. Since it was associated with criminal engagements, it was forbidden by the Italian Criminal laws till recently. The change started in early 2006 with much pressure being exerted by the European Union. The main drive of the change was that games that were perceived to be of skill were allowed. In 2009, the gaming rules were then changed to fit the European Union’s demands. The changes have been good and of great importance to this industry but the operators are still striving to reach better terms.

Gambling in Spain

Most of the gaming activities are legal and regulated throughout the country with the legislative powers shared by both regional authorities and the state. The Betting Act was introduced in the year 2011 with authority to supervise all the regions of the country. It operates through technological systems and in the recent past has been limiting advertisement and promotion of the games that are limited to some certain licenses. In the course of development, the relevant authorities have been working hand in hand with the state in a bid to increase the budget revenues.

Gambling in Austria

In this country, gambling is legal, and the relevant authorities must license and control the activities. Their gaming activities are defined in two ways, proper gambling, where huge amounts of cash are involved, and small gambling where the cash involved is small. The latter is allowed to be practiced everywhere while the first one is restricted to land-based casinos only.

Gambling in Belgium

Gambling here has tied to the development of the country. In 2002, legislation was approved by the act being established in 2009 with the main reason for its creation being a reduction of any chances of addiction to the gamers. There is also a blacklist which records the operators who are not licensed or rather who have violated the rules of the act.

Gambling in Germany

Multiple changes have occurred over the years making it difficult to understand the betting system. Horse racing was previously the only allowed game. The several changes have brought up bans and approvals for the gaming industry. From the year 2008 to the year 2012, gambling was illegal. Most of the contradiction was caused by the pre-existence of two contradictory laws. However, the pressure from the European Union has been pushing the related authorities into making more developments.

Gambling in the Netherlands

The government authorities govern the gambling in this country. More restriction is focused on the international operators with the authorities sticking to maintaining a monopoly in the industry. In 2016, a Remote Gaming Bill was introduced which also facilitates the licensing of the operators.

Generally, in the Western European countries, the legislation is mostly controlled by the states, the European Union, and several other authorities. The greatest task of legislation is mainly controlling the operation of the gambling operators and issuing licenses. Despite the past lack of legalization of the gambling in the past, there have been developments in the regulatory side leading to big developments in the industry.


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