Sports Betting Could Be Opened to Foreign Firms

By , 16 Jan 2018, 21:59 PM Business
A representative image of interested sports fans A representative image of interested sports fans Photo By José Cruz/ABr [CC BY 3.0 br], via Wikimedia Commons

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MP claims current system costs Slovenia. 

January 16, 2018

An MP for the ruling Modern Centre Party (SMC) has submitted a legislative proposal that would allow foreign sports betting providers to obtain licences to offer their services in Slovenia, reports the STA on January 16, 2018.

The current gaming act restricts conventional games of chance, including bets, to two providers - the national lottery operator Loterija Slovenije and sports betting company Športna Loterija.

MP Branko Zorman would change that, arguing that a monopoly in sports betting contravenes EU rules, because it means unlawful protection of private providers and prevents efficient tax collection.

He said that the monopoly position of Športna Loterija was only "artificial", because Slovenian residents placed bets mostly with foreign providers.

In this way taxes from the bets are not collected in the Slovenian tax system, and consumers do not enjoy proper safeguards.

Zorman proposes opening the market to concessionaires from the European Economic Area, which are already present in the Slovenian market, although they do not have a concession here and do not pay taxes here.

Slovenia would thus grant concessions to all providers who meet the requirements such as having enough assets to pay out winnings.

The concession would entail a fee of EUR 500,000, which would ensure the provider's credibility and increase the proceeds of the Sports Organisations Fund and the Fund for Disability and Humanitarian Organisations.

Even if no provider applied for a concession, Zorman said that the bill would have a positive effect as the existing concessionaire would be forced to make its operations more efficient and improve the quality of services.

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