Greece proposes ‘underwhelming’ online gambling framework

Greek Finance Minister Euclid Tsakalotos has presented the initial framework for the nation’s new online gambling licensing regime, seeking to continue the overhaul of Greek-wide industry regulations.

Since 2011, The Greek government has allowed 24 operators to operate online gambling services, sanctioned through ‘transitional permits’.

The Ministry of Finance will allow these operators first right to secure its revamped online gambling licenses, however, stakeholders will likely be disappointed by the steep costs attached to procurement.

In its proposed framework, the Greek government has attached a €4 million fee for securing an online sports betting licence, with operators forced to pay an additional €1 million for operating further online gambling services.

At present, the proposed online gambling licences will last for a period of five years, with operators further required to prove that they operated legally within regulated EU jurisdictions, along with records disclosing up to three years of corporate financial performance.

On application, all interested parties seeking to secure a new online gambling license will be forced to deposit €500,000 with the Greek Finance Ministry.   

The Greek government has stated that it won’t allow ‘black-listed operators’ to apply for licensing for a period of up to 12 months. Applicants will learn of their acceptance within two months of filing.

Further complications see the Ministry of Finance attach a ‘variable tax’ on consumer winnings above €100, which will be withheld by Greece’s tax authority before redistribution to customers.

As yet, little is known as to whether the Greek government will seek to adjust its 35% revenue tax on online gambling services.

The Ministry of Finance will move to open a consultation window on its proposed framework, seeking advice and opinion from active stakeholders within the Greek gambling market.

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