Sweden makes plans to stamp out illegal gambling

Spelinspektoren has set out plans to address the black iGaming market in Sweden.

Illegal operators are a cause for concern here, for various reasons. For a start, they make up over 10% of the online gambling landscape. Unlicensed brands also tend not to comply with local laws, nor do they pay tax.

Nobody’s a winner from illegal gambling, other than the unregulated operators 

Spelinspektoren identified the negative implications of illegal gambling operators, for both players and the state. Player protection levels are often lower than what is offered by licensed brands, while Sweden loses money through unpaid tax.

But to combat the above, the country’s main gambling authority has set out to ensure that gambling operations are more focused on the legal options for players.

Going forward, websites will be checked to see if they have terms and conditions listed in Swedish. There will also need to be an option for players to deposit in Swedish Kronor (SEK). Moreover, offerings must be tailored for consumers in this country.

Spelinspektoren mentioned that it’s not always easy to determine whether or not illegal operators are deliberately targeting players in Sweden. However, the above criteria will help them to determine this better.

Unregulated operators from abroad 

It was also mentioned that many illegal websites targeting players in the Nordic country were often based in other countries, many of which weren’t in the EU either.

When discussing its new approach to illegal gambling, Spelinspektoren made the following comments.

“There is no simple solution or any tool that can directly exclude these illegal gaming operators from the Swedish market. However, Spelinspektionen believes that there are several stakeholders who can take steps to limit the opportunity and incentives to conduct illegal gambling in Sweden. Spelinspektionen will prioritise collaboration with these bodies.”

Answering calls 

There had been a growing demand from those within the regulated Swedish market for Spelinspektoren to address the large black market. For example, Kindred Group CEO Henrik Tjärnström said that both operators and B2B partners should require local licences. Through this, he believes that it would be easier to “cull unlicensed operators from the market”.