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RGA disappointed with recently released report

March 18, 2009 2009

The Remote Gambling Association (RGA) has expressed displeasure over the EU Parliament’s decision to ignore the findings of an independent report commissioned through Europe Economics.

Referring to the recently released report, which effectively upholds the existing right of member states to control gambling and sports betting, Clive Hawkswood, chief executive, RGA, said many of the conclusions were unsupported and that the report was advanced by vested interests seeking to keep certain markets closed to competition.

“We have a good story to tell if people are willing to hear it, but unfortunately many people have deeply ingrained anti-gambling prejudices and, of course, there are powerful vested interests that are opposed to the opening up of markets in the EU.”

“The serious claims in this Resolution are highly detrimental to European-licensed operators, which already comply with stringent legislation and high standards of consumer protection and social responsibility. Moreover, it blindly ignores the findings of the [EU] Parliament’s own study, prepared by Europe Economics which demonstrates the lack of evidence to support many of these arguments.”

In December last year, the RGA had stated, “The freedom of establishment and the freedom to provide gambling services across internal EU borders are set down in the EC Treaty. Several Member States, however, have yet to amend their gambling laws to take account of this and Commission infringement proceedings against those States are still outstanding.”

The RGA had urged the authorities to address these unfair restrictions as a matter of priority because not only do they constitute a clear breach of EC law, “but they are also unfairly restricting the growth of many well established and responsible online European companies and reducing consumer choice.”


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