European Commission notified of Swedish Gambling amendments

The amendments to Sweden
The amendments to Sweden

The Swedish gambling regulator will gain new powers to limit unlicensed gaming.

Sweden.- Sweden has notified the European Commission of reforms to the Gambling Act 2018. Developed by the Ministry of Finance, the reforms aim to “minimise unlicensed gambling” and provide more regulatory control against the black market as well as to counter match-fixing. 

The amendments aim to increase the gambling regulator Spelinspektionen‘s ability to monitor and restrict payment transactions. It will receive direct authority to issue penalties against payment service providers (PSP) that facilitate transactions with unlicensed operators. Swedish-licensed PSPs will be ordered to conduct new due-diligence measures on payments with online gambling operators and will need to preserve data to help the inspectorate investigate unlicensed gaming operators.

Meanwhile, the regulator must notify Sweden’s Tax Agency of any penalties, bans or suspensions issued against PSPs due to them processing unlicensed transactions. Spelinspektionen’s controls will be reviewed twice a year by a Council for the Gambling Market, which will be led by the Finance Ministry, Financial Supervisory Authority, Public Health Authority, Tax Agency, Consumer Agency and the police.

The definition of sports regulations on match-fixing will also be updated and new provisions will allow the Swedish Sports Federation to process operator data in order to probe match-fixing and sports corruption. The Swedish government intends to introduce the amendments by July.

Spelinspektionen publishes new duty of care guidance

Earlier this month, Spelinspektionen published guidance on what operators should include in their Duty of Care action plans. It provided examples of good practice after finding some operators’ plans to be lacking following a review in 2021.

All licensees must have an action plan for how duty of care is to be fulfilled as required in Chapter 14 of Sweden’s Gambling Act 2018. Operating procedures must be in place to protect players against excessive gambling and they must record engagements with players who show signs of problems.

Under the new guidance, Spelinspektionen requires operators to detail indicators of problem gambling and to provide a framework on how duty-of-care procedures are to be conducted. Action plans should recognise indicators such as number of games, session times, increases in deposit limits, player age and interrupted withdrawals.

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