The European Union, Japan, and Canada have reached a settlement with the U.S. regarding its protectionist online gambling policy through UIGEA, although US tolerates some forms of online gambling, such as state lotteries and horse racing.
Remote Gambling Association made today a complaint under the EU Trade Barriers Regulation seeks to stop discriminatory practices against European operators. The complaint says is against the United States (US) for discrimination based on violations of World Trade Organisation (WTO) rules.
“We have been left with no choice but to pursue all legal avenues available to challenge the US Department of Justice for its discriminatory enforcement activities against European online gaming operators,” said Clive Hawkswood, the Chief Executive of the Remote Gambling Association.
The DOJ has repeatedly stated that all forms of online gambling are illegal, yet it continues to enforce this view only in connection with non-US businesses. In October 2006, the US enacted a new law (the “Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act”, or UIGEA) which effectively criminalised online gaming provided by foreign operators while providing exemptions for protected domestic suppliers.
“How would US investors and businessmen feel if they invested in a business in the United Kingdom based on international law commitments, and then suddenly the U.K. not only passed new laws forcing them to shut down their business, but then tried to throw them in jail for past activities while still allowing their domestic competitors to continue on doing the same thing?” Hawkswood asked.“That’s what is happening to our industry in the US,” he added.
Through the members of RGA there are 888, Bet 365, Skybet, Betfair, Sportingbet, Microgaming, Totesport, CryptoLogic, PartyGaming, Eurogaming, Playtech, and many other very known companies.
The fight for online gaming industry just started. Do you bet on US, or the EU companies?