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Greece Facing Complaint Over New Online Gambling Law

The European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA), the Remote Gambling Association (RGA) and the European Commission filed a complaint against the new online gambling law adopted by the Greek government recently.
According to NewEurope Online, the new regulation has already been criticized by the European Commission regarding its compatibility with EU law, when Greece submitted its first draft of the legislation in June this year.
The Greek parliament had passed the online gambling legislation, along with other legislation designed to help save the Greek economy in an omnibus bill in August 2011.
The EGBA and RGA have reported a number of anti-competitive and unjustified restrictions in the adopted law, which place unnecessary and unjustified economic burdens on new operators, such as forcing them to have a permanent establishment in Greece and limiting financial transactions to Greek banks.
The law also imposes a higher age limit for online than offline gambling, which the associations see no justifiable evidence to support that restriction.
The new tax regime would require the licensed gambling operators currently operating in Greece to potentially pay their taxes on any revenues earned from Greece-based customers retroactively from the January 1 2010 until the new licenses have been awarded.
In the meantime, the Greek Government decided to grant OPAP, the incumbent monopoly gambling operator for offline games, an extension of its existing licence for an additional 10 years from 2020 to 2030.

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