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European cross-border gambling market

euroIn many Member States no data exists on the scale of the cross-border gambling market. Member States stress that it is difficult to quantify the cross-border dimension of online gambling services as these services are very often not regulated in the respective Member State. A number of Member States however have conducted studies and surveys whilst for others third party studies are available:

In the UK the regulator concludes that players appear to gamble on UK regulated sites. There is little, if any evidence, of an unauthorised market.

In Sweden the number of players gambling with foreign operators is growing: from 3% of the population in 2008/2009 to 4.5% in 2009/2010. 29% respectively 38% of the players was gambling only with foreign operators. The market share of foreign online operators is estimated to be 10% of the overall gambling market (SWELOGS population study).150 foreign commercial operators are estimated to be active in the market. Their marketing expenses rose from SEK 437 million in 2000 to SEK 1.6 billion in 2010. Licensed non-EU operators are only a small proportion of the total online market.

The government estimates the turnover of the unauthorised sports betting market in Germany (land-based and online) to be at least €2.7 bn (€350 million GGR), about 60% is generated online. Germany is considered to be the biggest cross-border online poker market in the EU with a market size of around €320 million and almost 600 000 players (Online Poker in the European Union; Ingo Fiedler, Ann‐Christin Wilcke; University of Hamburg.).

In Finland the value of gambling on foreign sites totalled €120 million in 2008 (betting €40 million, casino games €40 million, poker €30 million and bingo €10 million – TNS Gallup survey, 2008). In 2009 the total amount of sports betting by players located in Finland using service providers outside Finland was approximately €50 million (The Atlas Survey, 1-6/2009).

In France regular data collection and reporting has been introduced by the new gambling law in 2010 and studies are under preparation. Previously unlicensed operators now have a market share of 65% for betting, 12% for horse racing, 90% for casino in the regulated market. Out of 35 operators that have been issued a licence since the introduction of the new law 14 operators already had a license from another Member State and 12 are part of a group with a license in another Member State.

In Greece government estimates that around 250 unauthorised online gambling sites, 60 of which have Greek language versions, are active in the country. 20 000 gaming machines and 150 000 computers in public places are offering unauthorised online games. The annual turnover of illegal online betting in Greece is estimated to reach €2 billion, equal with brick and mortar betting of state monopoly. Also, the turnover in the betting exchanges, illegal poker and casino games reaches a €1.5 – 2 billion.

In 2008 1 million Dutch citizens used unauthorised gambling services. 5.1% of the population or 500 000 citizens gamble online; with an average stake of €12-13 (“The nature and scale of illegal gaming in the Netherlands”, Ministry of Justice, November 2009).

In Slovenia the number of players placing sports bets with foreign operators has increased in comparison with previous years while the number of players gambling in casinos or playing the lottery decreased. An increasing number of players from Slovenia are gambling with foreign online gambling providers (almost 40% of those surveyed), for example betting an average of over €30 during the 2010 World Cup in South Africa (Research study on Gambling in Slovenian households, with emphasis on internet gambling, FIHO, August 2011).

In Slovakia the government estimates that 90% of online players gamble on foreign sites.

In 2010 380 000 Norwegians gambled online; 55% only in Norway, 25% only with foreign operators, 20% both. The total turnover amounted to NOK 7.2 billion while foreign sites only generated NOK 5 billion (suggesting that players set higher stakes on foreign sites – Regular survey of the Norwegian Gaming Authority).

Source: europa.eu

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