Events Gaming & gambling

Annual Gaming Industry Event 2024

Posted on 13 February 2024 by Gaming & gambling

On Friday 2 February 2024, KKF’s Gaming & Gambling Practice Group and the International Masters of Gaming Law (IMGL) hosted the 19th edition of the Annual Gaming Industry Event at the Koninklijke Industrieele Groote Club in Amsterdam. Please see a video report of the event below.

Justin Franssen (Partner at KKF) and Quirino Mancini (President of IMGL) opened the event, after which René Jansen (Chairman of the Board of the Netherlands Gambling Authority) and Fedor Meerts (Department Head Integrity & Gambling of the Ministry of Justice and Security) delivered their keynote speeches.

René Jansen reflected on the first years of the Dutch licensed remote gambling market before turning to the NGA’s top priority for 2024: the duty of care. The NGA aims to have the amended responsible gambling policy rules published in mid-April and enter into force on 1 May 2024. Jansen also noted that the NGA understands that operators will need some time to adjust their systems to these new rules. He continued by addressing advertising, stressing operators not to test the limits as it could lead to the introduction of a full ban on advertising. Concerning AML, he indicated that more fines cannot be excluded. On combatting the illegal market, Jansen indicated that the capacity of the NGA’s enforcement department will be expanded and it will more often look at facilitators, such as affiliates, payment services providers and internet service providers servicing illegal operators. Jansen ended his speech by encouraging operators to show that player protection is structurally at a much higher level in the licensed market than at illegal operators.

Fedor Meerts first focussed on the topics of the Minister of Legal Protection’s letter of December 2023 (e.g. the need for licence holders to contact players who want to set a deposit limit higher than €150 (18-23 years)/€350 (24 years and higher) per month), also indicating that these rules will be published for a consultation in February 2024 and are expected to enter into force end of 2024. Subsequently, he looked ahead at what is to be expected for the gambling sector in 2024, e.g. the evaluation of the Remote Gambling Act. Meerts stressed the need for a data-driven conversation and indicated that an important aspect of the evaluation will be whether players are sufficiently protected (referring to both channelisation and the duty of care).

An interactive discussion was held under the supervision of Frank Tolboom (Partner at KKF) and Alan Littler (Gaming lawyer at KKF), where the audience participated by having to voice their stance on different dilemmas. A lively discussion ensued about inter alia: the success of the legalisation of remote gambling in the Netherlands, the role of trade organisations in improving the negative image of the gambling industry, and the proportionality of potential new restrictions. This was followed by an informal reception and dinner.

The event was covered by various media, including Gaming in Holland, CasinoNieuws (here and here) and VIXIO Gambling Compliance.

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