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eu1.jpgAfter the lodging of a formal complaint by the Remote Gambling Association, the European Commission has launced a probe that will determine the fairness of United States regulations which are currently preventing European gambling companies from offering their full-range of services to American citizens. The regualtion most under scrutiny is the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act, which was passed in 2006 and has since then forced many European based online gambling companies to withdraw from the American market in fear of legal action.

The European Commission is concerned that the U.S. regulations are unfairly biased against European companies and that the restrictions are not equivalent for both domestic and foreign companies. Peter Mandelson, the EU Trade Commissioner, said “The US has the right to address legitimate public policy concerns relating to internet gambling, but discrimination against EU companies cannot be part of the policy mix.”

It will take around five to seven months for the EU probe to produce results, and those results could allow the World Trade Organization to take action against the United States on behalf of the EU. The European Commission launched the probe after receiving a formal complaint from the Remote Gambling Association, which many online gambling companies, such as PartyGaming and PlayTech, are a part of. In fact, there are a total of thirty different companies in the RGA that have interests in online gambling, in one way or another.

The outcome of these proceedings will be of interest to everyone involved in online gambling.

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