Portugal’s Online Gambling Regulation Not Working
The current trend for regulating online gambling in almost every county is proving not effective in many cases. While some governments genuinely are interested in protecting and regulating the online gambling industry in their country, many are adopting new licensing regimes mainly for the revenues generated from issuing licenses.
One such case where regulation seems to be failing is that of Portugal. The Remote Gambling Association (RGA) has urged the Portuguese Government to look into their current regulation as the system is “failing”.
Figures from the RGA show that up to 68% of online punters gambling in Portugal are doing so from unlicensed offshore operators. The main online gambling vertical in Portugal is from Sports betting and currently this is the most restricted at the current time. Most punters are opting for offshore operators as the odds given are much more favorable.
The study by Eurogroup Consulting and RGA also found that 38% of Portuguese Punters solely gamble via unlicenced websites while 30% opted to gamble on unlicensed and licensed operators.
In light of these findings the RGA has suggested that the government change their taxation systems to be based on gross gaming revenue for all online products that should have as its main aim “ the best possible outcome for consumers, the industry and the government.”
Director of Government relations to the RGA, Pierre Tournier commented on the pending overhaul planned by the government.
He said,” The legal regime for online gambling that was adopted in 2015 is clearly failing to combat the unregulated market and change is much needed to make the regulation work.We strongly believe that the Portuguese government should follow examples of other European countries that have successfully regulated the sector by adopting a GGR-based tax and waiving some of the restrictions such as the sports catalogue, which would attract more operators in Portugal.”