The Netherlands’ iGaming market is unlikely to launch until July 2021, six months later than originally planned. This is because governing bodies within the country need some extra time to draft secondary legislation.
Original plans shifted
At first, the plan was for the Remote Gambling Act (RGA) to come into force from 1st July 2020. This would have given Kansspelautoriteit (KSA), the officially Dutch gambling regulator, time to process licence applications. Everything would have then officially gone live in January 2021.
However, it’s now likely that the market will have to wait half-a-year more for both of these actions to come into effect.
Better news for advertisers
Some better news for affiliates and operators waiting for the Dutch market to open is that online gambling ads won’t be massively restricted here. Sander Dekker, the country’s Minister for Justice and Security, said not long ago that controlling advertising too much could actually lead to a rise in gambling addiction.
However, it was also mentioned that some existing rules might be reinforced. These include the limiting of bonus offers for free play credits. Another legal area which would form part of this is celebrity endorsements, especially if an individual has a strong youth appeal.
Changes to age verification laws
In the Netherlands, it’ll be mandatory for all operators to have a functional age verification system from January 1st 2020 onwards. This has been introduced due to concerns that, before 2018, it was quite easy for minors to wager with few obstacles.
This new law will form part of the prioritisation process for licensing. Those who comply will be placed ahead of those who don’t, in terms of having their application reviewed. They’ll also likely not need to apply for a remote licence once the regulated market has fully launched.
Operators that fail to include such a system, on the other hand, can expect to have their licences rejected. It’s also possible that they’ll be hit with a fine.