Netherlands Expecting Fewer Online Gambling License Applicants Than Anticipated

  • Originally planned on receiving 183 online gambling licenses
  • Expected number of license applicants will now be closer to 68
  • Draft regulations for the sector would implement significant restrictions on license holders
Netherlands flag against blue sky

Opening up the market

The gambling authorities in the Netherlands are expecting a lot fewer applicants for online gambling licenses than they were originally planning on. It was about a year ago that the legislature gave its approval to the Remote Gaming Act, allowing licensed online gambling in the country. 

It was in summer 2019 that the country’s gambling regulator Kannspelautoriteit (KSA) said that it had received expressions of interest in licenses from 183 different operators, including 89 international companies.

there will be 68 operators applying for licenses

However, a new study commissioned by the government says that there will be 68 operators applying for licenses, with 41 of them being international operators. 

Many see the planned stringent regulatory measures as being a deterrent for a lot of potential applicants.

Licensing process

This study also estimates that about 25% of applicants will not be successful. For those who are successful, they will get a five-year license.

This will allow them to offer online casino games, poker, betting on races, and sports betting. Online lotteries will not be allowable as these activities will remain under the scope of the government. 

There will be an €800,000 ($696,000) fee to be paid initially for obtaining a license. Each year there will be a license renewal fee of €800,000 ($696,000) also. The government set a tax rate of 29% on these online gambling revenues.

Rules being drafted

It was during this week that the government issued a General Administrative Order draft.

Legislators will look at this draft and suggest potential changes to it before it goes into law. There are a number of sections in this draft that have been controversial.

Some controversial components

As part of the draft, operators who have been targeting Netherlands residents illegally in the past few years will have to sit out of the licensed market for 30 months before being able to receive a license. 

There are also plans for significant gambling advertising restrictions. This would see all forms of gambling ads from being broadcasted from 6am until 9pm. These ads cannot feature any role models or influencers. 

There are plans to curtail certain types of betting markets. This is mainly for sports betting markets that can be open to potential manipulation through match fixing, such as betting a player getting a yellow card in a soccer game. 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *