Sander Dekker: “We shall postpone the entry into force of the Koa Act by one month until April 1”

The opening of the igaming licensing process in Holland has been put back from March 1 to April 1.
The opening of the igaming licensing process in Holland has been put back from March 1 to April 1.

The Netherlands’ Minister for Legal Protection has said that the March 1 launch of the Remote Gambling Act has been pushed back again.

The Netherlands.- The implementation of the Dutch Remote Gambling Act (KOA) to allow regulated igaming in the country has been delayed for a third time, the minister responsible has announced.

The Minister for Legal Protection, Sander Dekker, said the implementation and opening of the licensing process would be pushed back from March 1 to April 1

The date for regulated igaming to go live has been put back from September 1 to October 1, nine months later than initially planned.

Dekker said that the government had decided that a slower implementation was desirable to create a stronger regulatory environment.

Read more: The Netherlands publishes draft igaming conditions.

It’s the third delay to the implementation of Holland’s Remote Gambling Act. The legislation permitting online gambling was originally due to be implemented on July 1 2020, with regulated igaming to go live six months later. 

In November 2019, it was announced that the timeframe would be put back by six months.

The launch of igaming legislation was then pushed back by another two months in August, due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Answering questions from legislators, Dekker said: “Earlier I informed you that we are aiming for entry into force on 1 March 2021.

“Although the implementation is proceeding energetically, it has now become clear to all involved that careful implementation takes a little more time.

“For this reason, we shall postpone the entry into force of the Koa Act by one month until 1 April, 2021, so that De Kansspelautoriteit (KSA) and the gambling sector have sufficient opportunity for complete preparation.

“The opening of the market will then take place on 1 October 2021.”

Dekker said that the national self-exclusion scheme CRUKS was on track to be ready for launch on the same date.

Holland has already expanded testing of the gambling self-exclusion scheme.

He said: “For the sake of completeness, I would also like to inform you that, in my opinion, all conditions for the anticipated timelines with regard to the introduction of CRUKS are still met.

“This means that CRUKS must be implemented by all concerned providers by 1 October, 2021.”

Dekker also announced that the government would commission a report on how the legalisation of online gambling has impacted lottery sales in other European countries. 

He said he believed it was “unlikely that there was a causal relationship” between the two verticals, noting that both the UK and Norway had seen lottery sales increase following the legalisation of igaming while Denmark and Italy had seen sales fall.

He said the Dutch online gaming market would be reviewed after three years and that a levy for sports and good causes could be introduced if it was seen that lottery sales had fallen. 

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