The European Gaming and Betting Association has welcomed progress made by the European Commission in improving the digital single market, but urged for more to be done ‘to bring the EU’s approach to online gambling into the 21st century.’
Outlined in its 2020 work programme, the Commission outlined its plans to improve efficiency of the single market, particularly for online consumers.
Its strategy included a pledge to publish a new digital services act, a report on barriers to the single market and an action plan for enforcing single market rules.
Maarten Haijer, secretary general of the EGBA, said: “EGBA welcomes the Commission’s commitment to making the single market work for online consumers. More than 16.5 million Europeans bet online but their rights are not protected by any EU rules. It is time to bring the EU’s approach to online gambling into the 21st century – the Commission should act.”
The EGBA did suggest, however, that the Commission should consider including a review of its approach to online gambling as part of its programme.
In a statement on its website, the EGBA said: “With more than 16.5 million Europeans betting online, there is clearly a need for a more consistent EU policy towards this cross-border sector worth €22.2 billion and growing by 10% each year.
“For instance, the Commission never followed up on its 2014 recommendation on consumer protection and responsible advertising for online gambling – which has been implemented fully by only one EU member state – leaving many EU betting consumers exposed to inadequate levels of consumer protection online.”