Since 2012, the revision to the State Gambling Treaty is in force, which implies focusing on consumer. On closer inspection, however, the legislation framework turns out to be a paper tiger. And Germany as a market that is anything like controlled.
Let’s consider the example of online blackjack. On the computer screen you can see a young, pretty woman who distributes the cards at a table covered with green felt table. Your workplace could be a casino in the Cayman Islands. The steps to get to that table are made quickly. Simply enter a junk email address and come up with a pseudonym. Then pull out your credit card, transfer money to internet casino and enjoy the game.
‘I would say that the vast number of gambling operators in Europe work illegally, partly without a license in one of the countries of origin, which grants dramatic competitive advantages, because protective mechanisms, such as proof of identity, proof of age, multiple accounts, all this is not really checked’.
Whether you are 16 or 45 years old, whether your credit card is fraudulent or not, you will hardly be asked to register for the Black Jack on the Internet, at least not on this portal, based probably on the Cayman. So you will be able gamble uncontrollably, which was meant to be partially dealt with State Gambling Treaty, negotiated under the 16 federal states. The situation brings more confusion than real regulation, legislation opposition argues.
Vast sums in a place
Tilman Becker in the unique research center for gambling at the University of Hohenheim is quite frustrated. Just as the previous speaker Friedrich Stickler, president of the European Lottery Association. But what distressed the gentlemen? Their concern is mainly the Internet. Gambling providers are springing up like mushrooms, have their headquarters in the Philippines, the Cayman Islands and other tax havens, and offer exotic bets with cheap rates. Taxes are paid by few of the estimated 12,000 worldwide Internet gambling providers.
Moreover, the variety of gambling entertainment is gaining momentum and getting even more impressive and sophisticated. Therefore, many of the approximately 400,000 German gamblers also migrate to the Internet, away from the smoky casinos and grey-headed slot machines. Vast sums are operated with in the online world: supposedly over 100 billion euros in Europe alone, according to online casino DGFEV.de, an prominent organization running a stats and reviews website. On the one hand there is a global proliferation of the Internet. But not even in Europe uniform rules are taken advantage of. As President of the European Lottery Association Friedrich Spickler represents the interests of state lotteries, the look with suspicion on what is happening on the Internet.
‘Of course, in Malta or Gibraltar licensing has essential significance for the local markets. The branch generates a large share because they advertise heavily, because they take advantage of this gray area strongly and say that in the European Union an operator would be de facto legal’.