Poland Drafts Amendments To Its Gambling ActJune 1, 2016 11:38 am
Poland introduced its Gambling Act in 2009, but the piece of legislation is now viewed as being too restrictive and presenting an impediment for gambling operators to reach their full potential. Consequently, the country’s Deputy Prime Minister Janusz Piechocinski (photo) and its Minister of Science and Higher Education Jaroslaw Gowin are currently drumming up support in the Polish Parliament for some important amendments they have drafted.
One of those amendments includes clamping down on gray market operators who each year syphon millions of dollars away from Poland’s legitimate gambling market. As things stand, internet sports betting is allowed in Poland, while online poker and casino games are barred according to Poland’s Gambling Act. Regardless, international operators continue to flaunt the law and offer their products unhindered by government enforcement, and as a spokesperson for the Ministry of Finance explained recently:
“Illegal gambling operators will be subject to more severe consequences, which will hamper their operations and thus increase the market share of legal entities offering gambling.”
Polish online gambling advocates argue that regulating the industry is the best way to safeguard the interests of consumers, and that the only way to dissuade people from playing on unregulated, illegal sites is to give international operators the opportunity to become integrated within the Polish market. In the meantime, a series of proposals have been suggested to help ward unlicensed operators from breaking Polish laws, which includes the levying of hefty fines, as well as the powers to block websites, and disrupt payment processing transactions. This should prove beneficial for Polish sports teams which are predicted to reap an extra €25 million each year in revenues which might otherwise have ended up in the pockets of sites holding no valid Polish license.
Other amendments being proposed include the setting of a 20% tax on betting revenues, with 7% of revenues subsequently going to the Polish Olympic Committee, and a further 7% towards gambling addiction prevention programs.