Lithuania Starts Enforcing Its Gambling Law Amendments

On January 1st, Lithuanian government agencies started enforcing the greater powers granted to them by recent changes made to the country’s gambling laws. As a result, any unlicensed, offshore gambling operator that continues to offer its products to Lithuanian citizens can now expect to be dealt with in the harshest possible terms, and leaving any potential miscreant in no doubt as to what they can expect, Gaming Control Authority (GCA) director, Virginijus Dauksys, said:
“These changes to regulation have been widely publicized and will be strictly legally enforced. Gaming operators need to be licensed to operate in the Republic of Lithuania.”
As part of its overall strategy, the GCA has said that it will produce a blacklist of gambling websites that are considered non grata in Lithuania, with the country’s internet service providers expected to ensure none of these websites contravene the new laws. The GCA also has the authority to stop ISPs from allowing offshore gambling sites to access their services, and any that fail to do so can now expect to receive a heavy fine.
In addition, financial institutions, banks and payment processing providers must now legally refuse any illegal online gambling transactions, or else leave themselves open to prosecution.
The gaming law amendments which are currently being enforced were first signed into law last summer by Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite, with another of its requirements being that those gambling firms in receipt of an official license should be partnered with a Lithuanian land-based casino, and set up an office inside the country. The president has also insisted that gambling activities would be tightly monitored in Lithuania, and that advertising by operators would not be allowed. Needless to say, leaving little scope for companies to market their products is likely to create a rather unattractive environment for companies, and so far the country has received just one application for an iGaming license.

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