The European Casino Association (ECA) welcomes EU Member States’ conclusions regarding the way forward on online gambling

Brussels, 14 December 2010 – EU Ministers last Friday unanimously agreed that strict national regulation and supervision through national authorities coupled with an enhanced cooperation and best practice sharing between Member States is required to effectively tackle the global challenges posed by online gambling.

The set of conclusions published by the Council on 10 December 2010 on the framework conditions for gambling and betting sets an important political signal, as for the first time ever all EU Member States have clearly stated that regulatory solutions for online gambling must be found.

The ECA congratulates the Belgian Presidency for deploying particular efforts in brokering this agreement and welcomes EU Members States’ acknowledgement that online gambling is a global issue requiring strict regulation and supervision by the public authorities of each EU Member State in their respective territories.

Ron Goudsmit, Chairman of the ECA, notes: “We absolutely endorse the view that stronger cooperation between countries is required both to improve the regulatory environment and to establish effective law enforcement”, adding that “the Council conclusions are indeed a milestone for future discussions at EU level”.

The ECA hopes that the European Commission, whose Green Paper on Online Gambling will launch a broad public consultation and is now expected for March 2011, recognises this unanimous decision by the Council.