which are the strictest and most lenient countries? – News from the European gaming industry

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Gambling laws change all the time and it can be hard to keep up. Most of Europe allows some form of gambling, but the rules and legislation are different from country to country. In this guide, we take a look at the strictest and most lenient countries in Europe when it comes to gambling.

While some countries strictly legislate and license some gaming companies (but not all that apply for a license), other countries take a much more liberal approach. A more competitive industry allowing for competition means consumers can find more bonuses and promotions.

Norway – strict

Norwegian gambling is strictly limited and regulated by state-approved sites, such as Norsk Tipping. However, Norwegians are free to use companies that are technically based in other countries – so in reality there is no huge impact on the consumer. Many options exist for the Norwegian market and sites such as Casinospesialisten.net can help you through your options.

Cyprus – strict

Cyprus has some of the strictest rules and you cannot bet on horse racing or dog racing online. Spread betting is not allowed and you cannot use cryptocurrency in your gambling in the country. This means that there are some limited sports betting, but this is the main scope of gambling services in Cyprus.

Cyprus is actually one of the few European countries to ban certain types of gambling, and most of Europe has more liberal rules.

Germany – strict (but changing)

Germany has complicated gambling laws, but they change all the time. In 2021, a new interstate treaty aligned all states on applicable restrictions and their ability to provide licenses. Previously, each state had its own specific rules.

The treaty means there are sports betting licenses and many different marketplaces and online casinos, but there is still a different method for each state when it comes to providing betting shops and other land outlets.

Some forms of gambling are limited and you can only bet a certain amount. Slot machines are capped at a “per spin” rate to prevent people from playing too much at one time, and bookmakers cannot supply as many markets as some other countries.

Sweden – lenient

Swedish laws have changed significantly, but the government runs most of the online gambling industry, which means they can get more revenue from taxes. Swedish gamers may therefore be at a disadvantage, as there is not the same level of competition between game companies. In addition, companies do not have the same requirement for customer service, for example.

Offshore gambling is not necessarily illegal and many people use Malta based casinos.

Malta – lenient

Although perhaps one of the smaller countries on the list, Malta has become a global gambling powerhouse due to the fact that it has very lenient gambling laws.

Everything from narrative slots to sports betting is legal in the country, with a number of country gambling markets turning to offshore solutions in Malta.

The Malta Gaming Authority has jurisdiction and offers two different license types: B2B and B2C.

With B2B licenses, the product must be for business use, which means people need this type of license to produce casino games or create other related framework and payment services for the market.

B2C is more relevant to the consumer, such as traditional bookmakers and sports betting marketplaces, and online gaming companies offering casino games.

Malta generates 12% of its GDP from the casino and online gaming industry, which shows how incredibly important it is to the culture of the island.

Finland – lenient

The government operates three organisations: Veikkaus, Fintoto and RAY. These control various aspects of gambling, including lotteries and sports (Veikkaus), land-based casinos (Fintoto) and horse racing (RAY).

Finnish lottery law requires all gaming companies to be state-licensed, but that doesn’t mean Finns can’t choose to gamble elsewhere with offshore accounts, if they so choose.

UK – lenient

The UK has lenient laws which are monitored by the Gambling Commission (UKGC).

The UKGC regulates an incredible range of games of chance, including over 800 different sports bets. Laws are regularly enforced and gaming companies must act on issues such as problem gambling. One of the most forgiving aspects is that you aren’t taxed on any of your winnings – no matter how big the gambling win, you won’t pay tax on it in the UK.

The world of casino legislation is constantly changing and it is important to keep up to date with the latest regulations in your country. However, many countries allow offshore gambling where consumers interact with gambling companies based elsewhere, although these may also have to comply with regulations. European countries often have lenient casino and gambling laws compared to other countries in the world.

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