Online poker proposal considered in Poland

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EnergyBet announced that on April 1 all its operations in Poland will come to a stop.

Jarosław Gowin, Poland’s Deputy Prime Minister and Science and Higher Education Minister, proposed a change in Polish legislation to legalise online poker.

Poland.- Minister Gowin and Zbigniew Boniek, President of the country’s Football Association, proposed the implementation of certain changes in the Polish Gambling Act of 2011 regarding the provision of sports betting and poker options.

Currently in the European country, poker can only be played at land-based casinos. Organising poker tournaments in private homes is illegal and online poker is not a legalised and regulated gambling activity.

According to Gowin’s proposal, the current 12 percent tax on revenue from sports betting should be replaced with a 20 percent one. A 10 percent share of the money the government receives from sports betting should contribute to the Polish Olympic Committee and to initiatives aimed at the prevention of gambling addiction. The new proposal also includes provisions for the legalisation and regulation of online poker and other gambling options offered via Internet.

Minister Gowin explained that he considers poker and sports betting less harmful gambling activities than slot games and that the new tax would result in PLN200 million (US$56 million) being annually generated for the country’s budget. However, since Minister Gowin’s plan did not come from the governing party in Poland, it would need quite a lot of support in order for the changes called for to be implemented.