The illegal gambling market is booming. Friedrich Stickler, president of the European Lotteries (EL), sounded the alarm: ‘The fate of the welfare of betting and lottery industries is on the stake’.
‘The legal providers are regulated heavily, while illegals gambling operators are getting away with their business due to inefficient legislation’, H. Stickler said at a lottery discussion organized by the industry experts at Baden-Württemberg in Stuttgart. It’s not a secret that illegal lotteries and sports betting enterprises are breeding at an anomalous speed, mainly it refers to the Internet sphere. ‘In Europe alone there are 15,000 online gambling sites, 12,500 of which not only unlicensed and pay no marginal contributions, but also neglecting the protection of players’, an Austrian gambling expert says.
The authorized providers are facing severe competitive disadvantages. ‘With low tax rates of between one and two percent, as they are common in offshore providers, the competition is hardly possible’. Additionally, Stickler called to defend the traditional, oriented to the common good lottery model. ‘What is needed to be implemented is a whole raft of measures: strict legal framework and penalties, the blockade of cash flows, the prohibition of illegal advertising and the publication of blacklists with the non-licensed providers to sensitize media and the public’. The EL-president warns: ‘We running out of time. The situation migrates from year to year, and we are marginalized as a common good provider economically in the foreseeable future’. The charity funds are also affected and the decrease inevitable given the current state of affairs.
Baden-Württemberg lottery CEO, Marion Caspers-Merk, emphasizes: ‘Parts of the gambling sector are completely out of joint. Manipulations in sports, increased gambling addiction dangers for consumers and reduced income for the common good are the sad side effects. We must not leave the free market forces in this sensitive area’.
‘The European Court of Justice has recently ruled that nation states must make their own gambling sector. I consider this as a clear confirmation of the amended State Treaty on gaming. Now its requirements must be implemented and the uncontrolled growth of recent years should be limited systematically’, the Baden-Württemberg-Lotto boss said.
The European Lotteries (EL) is the umbrella organization of general interest Lotteries and betting operators at European level. Since 2007, it has had its representation in Brussels, defending the interests of its members. The organization is pushing actively for active legalization of gambling in Germany. As the prominent gambling analysts report in the article published on DGFEV website, a comprehensive online database with hundreds of casino reviews and statistics, the annual turnover of illegal market in Europe alone is estimated at a phenomenal 150bn EUR amount. Given the fact that Germany is the first country in the Europe in terms of online players, the share of the country would be at least more than sufficient.