New Dutch online casino legislation expected to allow international operators

  • Amended Dutch laws for online gambling could be seen in 2019
  • Change would permit international operators to offer services to local players

The Netherlands may be set to legalize internationally operated online gambling, with reports suggesting that for the country, this could come as soon as January 1, 2019.

netherlands online gambling law

Henk Kesler himself, vice president of the Dutch Gaming Authority, is reported as suggesting this during a Sports Betting Integrity meeting, held in London in October 2017.

Dutch online legislation

Last year, the Dutch Lower House agreed on a piece of legislation for online gambling. That being said, progress on the new laws soon stalled.

Under the proposed changes that could come into place, international operators that are interested in targeting Dutch players with their products and services will reportedly be able to apply for a license to do so. This news comes just a few months after several international operators were fined for operating illegally in the country.

What’s in the bill?

In the 208 days it took the Dutch government to form an appropriate coalition, the Dutch Gaming Authority quickened its own pace to further limit the illegal online gambling sector to Dutch players.

For example, a few months ago, they unveiled new rules that would make it much more difficult for international operators to market to Dutch punters. Similarly, their new guidelines made it hard for online gambling companies to promote such services to local Dutch players.

This, however, was a somewhat expected move; back then, online gambling was still illegal in the country. Not only that, but the Dutch Gaming Authority has always reported as being against “the illegal provision of [online gambling] services.”

Defining the rules

As mentioned above, international operators interested in the Netherlands’ market will be allowed – under the new government’s new rule set – to apply for a license to operate in the country. However, this comes with a catch.

A few days ago, the new four-part coalition government published a document as part of its ‘confidence in the future’ program that laid out some of its proposed changes.

In it was reported to be a very small piece of information relating to online gambling. And perhaps unfortunately for some, to legally operate in the country, online gambling companies may be required to have a land-based reputation.

What this means is still unclear, though, with some operators wanting to know if this means that they must set up an office, base their servers in The Netherlands, or have already established an actual land-based gambling facility.

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