The Austrian Finance Ministry has announced it plans to ban all online gaming platforms apart from the Casinos Austria platform win2day.
The President of the Austrian Association for Betting and Gambling (OVWG), Claus Retschitzegger, stated, “We will defend ourselves against the planned IP blocking using all legal and other means.”
The Austrian Finance Minister, Hartwig Löger, introduced the draft law for gambling this Tuesday. Players should have the possibility to demand any losses back from any then illegal online provider – players would have up to 30 years to do this. All contracts between online providers and their customers are to be made null and void.
Retschitzegger remains confident of finding a solution, “There are good examples, such as in Great Britain and Denmark. Online casinos are regulated and concessions are created.” Responsible gaming is then regulated and the state receives tax income. “This is an advantage for all parties”, he continued.
A ban would have consequences on the job market. For example, bet-at-home employs 300 people in Linz. The debate on the legality of online gaming in Austria has been going on for years. Most online gaming providers have a licence from Malta (about 300 in total).
An estimated 2,000 illegal gambling sites are currently accessible on the internet from Austria. The plan is for the telecom regulator TKK to quickly block such sites.