Norwegian bill aims to exempt gambling from EU consumer rights rule

Gambling is already exempt in EU law.
Gambling is already exempt in EU law.

A draft law would exempt gambling from Norway’s Right of Withdrawal Act.

Norway.- A draft law presented to the Norwegian parliament aims to make gambling exempt from the country’s Right of Withdrawal Act, which implements a 2011 EU consumer rights directive on the information a business must provide before entering into an agreement with a consumer.

The draft law was presented by the Ministry of Children and Families. It argues that the Right of Withdrawal Act, which includes a rule giving customers 14 days to withdraw from an agreement with a business, is difficult to implement for gambling. The EU directive does contain a clause exempting games of chance, but Norwegian law does not.

The ministry undertook consultation with government bodies, academic institutions, political organisations, gaming businesses and NGOs before presenting the bill.

The Norwegian Online Gambling Industry Association (NBO) which lobbies for the opening up of Norway’s monopoly gambling system, welcomed the bill but claimed that Norway’s main problem is the state-run monopoly.

It said: “The Norwegian Online Gambling Industry Association understands the ministry’s wish to amend the Right of Withdrawal Act so that it is more in line with today’s consumers’ relationship with gambling. As they write, it is a main principle of the Norwegian gambling policy ‘to channel gambling activity towards safe and sound gambling offers that are subject to public control’.

“To succeed in that, the games Norsk Tipping and Norsk Rikstoto offer must have sufficient competitiveness and be user-friendly. This is not the case either with or without the amendments to the Right of Cancellation Act.”

It added: “It is all the more gratifying to see that the ministry indicates in the consultation letter that they have checked the applicable law and practice in a number of European countries. What these countries have in common is that they have also chosen to regulate gambling through a licensing model – with the exception of Finland, which is expected to adopt this shortly.”

Norway formalises Norsk Rikstoto revenue share arrangements

The Ministry of Food and Agriculture has introduced regulations to formalise revenue share from the state-controlled gambling operator Norsk Rikstoto. Revenue is divided between national equestrian organisations.

The new rules formalise the arrangement, laying out the percentage of profit to be received by each body. The Ministry of Food and Agriculture previously had a degree of discretion to decide how to distribute the funds.

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