Greek regulator starts licensing process for online gambling

Greek regulator starts licensing process for online gambling 850 500 Gambling Consulting Expert

Two categories of licenses are available and they are: the online sportsbooks and online games of chance, and they will be valid for a period of seven years. The HGC set a 35% tax rate at license holders, a EUR 3 million license fee for sportsbooks, while games of chance will be covered by a EUR 2 million fee.

The Hellenic Gaming Commission (HGC) revealed that submissions can now be made online for all legal entities, including shareholders, key executives, manufacturers, technology suppliers, and certification bodies.

Greece’s Parliament had passed the Gambling Regulations in October last year and its Ministry of Finance had submitted the draft of regulations with amendments and controls to the European Commission for approval on January 2020.

The submission confirms that separate licenses will be made available for online sports betting and other online games, priced at €3m (£2.5m/$3.4m) and €2m respectively. Each will run for seven-year terms.

Per the bill passed last year, the 24 operators that were granted temporary licenses in 2011 were allowed to continue operating until 31 March this year, then have to reapply.

License holders must pay a 35% gross gaming revenue tax rate.

Play is restricted to those aged 21 and above. The regulations also impose strict conditions for online casinos, including a €2 maximum slot stake, with prizes capped at €5,000, and a €50,000 limit for jackpot games.

The International Betting Integrity Association (IBIA) criticized the Greek government’s plans at the time.

It said: “While IBIA welcomes aspects of the regulations, most notably the general opening the market and the ability for all betting operators to apply for a license and to operate in Greece, the association contends that there is clear evidence from other jurisdictions that the approach proposed will in fact deter many betting operators from being licensed in the market.”

The online gambling reforms were part of a wider package, called Invest in Greece, that included legislation intended to streamline environmental and planning regulations.