Switzerland’s Ban on Foreign Online Gambling Sites

Staff Writer Industry News 486

The 1st of July 2019 marks the date that Switzerland implemented a ban on foreign online casino operators, preventing them to offer gaming services to Swiss residents. This ban was decided through a referendum that took place in June 2018.

License granted to Swiss Land-based Casinos

Now, only casinos within Swiss boundaries are permitted to apply for a license to offer online gambling to Swiss residents. These gambling services can include lotteries, casino games and sports betting. Since the new law for the first time enables Swiss companies to offer online gambling, four licenses were awarded to local companies who are in the process of adding online gambling to their list of services.

Although foreign online casinos are being block through the ISP (Internet Service Provider), many online operators have also stopped accepting Swiss players and active accounts were suspended. However, players can cash out their balance, but they are not able to play there anymore.

Purpose behind the Law

The law is mostly implemented in order to help with the gambling addiction combat, which according to  Addiction Switzerland afflicts nearly 75,000 people in the small Alpine nation, thus costing society more than half a billion Swiss francs annually.

In addition, the law also enables Switzerland to tax revenues from online gambling activities, the proceeds of which are set to help fund anti-addiction measures.

According to the government, Swiss gamblers spend around 250 million Swiss francs per year on unregulated betting sites abroad that pay nothing into public coffers.

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