Online casino customers in Greece could face new restrictions in future after the Greek government moved ahead with the next stage of its proposed gambling reforms.
The Greek Ministry of Finance has submitted its draft regulations for the Greek gambling sector to the European Commission. The submission is a key part of the Greek authorities’ plans to radically overhaul the gambling industry, with a key component being a significant restriction on the ability of gambling operators to advertise games built around random number generators. This category includes all slots games, and most online table games.
The proposed legislation also contains a number of other restrictions. The headline proposal for many online casino players is the new maximum stake for random number generator games. The Greek authorities are proposing a maximum stake on each game of €2. This parallels the £2 maximum stake on Fixed Odds Betting Terminals (FOBTs) introduced by the UK government last year. In addition, the maximum profit that will be allowed in one gaming session will be €5,000. The proposals also include a plan to limit the maximum pay out for jackpot games at €500,000.
The proposals relating to advertising would make it illegal for the promotion of casino games to appear anywhere other than on the sites where they are based, which will make it harder for operators to attract new players. There will also be an age restriction of 21, under which age it will be illegal for anyone to play online casino games, and under the new proposals, any company that has been blacklisted during the previous year will not be eligible to receive a licence.
The proposals do contain some good news for the wider betting sector in Greece. Sports betting and poker products will not be subject to the same restrictions, but overall, the regulations are likely to cause significant difficulties for operators serving the Greek market.