The European Commission has released its report outlining plans to crack down on regulatory regimes that are not in line with EU law.

The Brussels-based commission has outlined initiatives to tackle member states with legislation in breach of EU law,
explaining that compliance is a “prerequisite of a successful EU policy on online gambling.”

Regulatory regimes in nine countries, including Greece and Germany, will be referred to the European Court of Justice.

Commissioner Michel Barnier said the EC will also adopt recommendations to address consumer protection, responsible advertising, and match-fixing and money laundering.

Lobbying groups like the European Gambling and Betting Association (EGBA) and the Remote Gambling Association (RGA) have praised the calls for compliance.

The EGBA, which represents the continent’s leading gaming operators, “fully endorses this conclusion and applauds today´s EC decision to relaunch infringement proceedings,” while RGA chief executive Clive Hawkswood described the news as a “worthy attempt” to address key issues.

Germany is in the process of allocating 20 sports betting licenses in a “highly contentious tendering procedure,” while Greece’s legislation blatantly favors monopoly operator OPAP.

Restrictive, protectionist legislation “closes the door” to regulated operators, encouraging consumers to seek unlicensed sites, the lobbying groups argue.

The Commission has faced fierce criticism for its feeble regulatory oversight.

Operators and trade groups like the EGBA and the RGA have filed more than 30 formal complaints in the European Court of Justice; however, there’s been no action on a single complaint or infringement proceeding since 2008.

The report may not call for the unified, harmonized legislation that many want.

However, it represents an important first step in getting non-compliant regimes in line with EU law.

EU member states have scheduled their next meeting for December.

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