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Brexit & Online Gambling - Consequences After the British Move

Published on January 15, 2020, 2:04 pm

by Jeff Grant Twitter account Jeff Grant LinkedIn account

How Brexit is impacting the online gaming industry

After over three years since the Brexit referendum was held, we are still far from understanding what the repercussions will be – not only in the United Kingdom but the broader European market. Whether it is the cost of food, real estate, fishing rights, or free trade agreements, Brexit is still resulting in more questions than solutions. However, the effects of Brexit on the online gambling industry is a topic that has always been under-discussed.

Brexit will undoubtedly change the gambling industry in the UK and other European nations. UK's best online casino sites make more money than any other country worldwide. Therefore, it is justified to reason that most individuals are concerned about the impact of Brexit on both domestic and foreign gamblers.

Possible Impacts of Brexit on Online Gambling

There are three areas that Brexit could affect the online gambling industry in the world.

The reality is, gambling is not regulated centrally in many European Union countries; instead, each nation has its own licensing procedures and laws.

As a result, most UK online gamblers will not realize much difference when the state breaks from the European Union. However, if you bet with a non-UK company, you could possibly be pulled out of the market.

Brexit will also cause a significant impact on bookmakers, who will be needed to decide about where to situation their online operations. Most of them are likely to shift from the UK to other EU gambling hubs such as Malta, and the cost of the move could hurt betters. Trade and tax agreements could also mean increased gambling website costs that might end up costing punters.

The Gambling Industry in the UK will enter Brexit in a very healthy condition. No EU country has as many resources and wealth in the gambling industry as the UK. Therefore, UK gambling companies are in an excellent position to deal with Brexit. Thus, the EU is less likely to turn against them.

Regarding the current relationship between the UK and the EU, the EU does not always have a clear approach to gambling. They tend to avoid being directly involved in tax-related issues, so the UK has always been free to increase or decrease its taxes. The UK has the most regulated gambling industry in Europe, and that means that Brexit should not result in regulation issues at home since the laws and processes that are already in place will continue functioning.

Phill Brear (Gibraltar Gambling Commission) talks about Brexit and its impact on the online gambling industry

A significant aspect to understand concerning Brexit is that the EU has a big part of the gambling market, accounting for about 50% of the total gambling revenue in the world. The problem with the European Union online casinos is that each member country has its gambling legislation. Therefore, not much is expected to change the post-Brexit outcomes in terms of gambling in the European Union. UK's gambling legislation requires companies to have relevant authority or licenses to operate in various EU nations. Likewise, gambling companies from other EU nations with UK licenses will continue working in the UK.

However, most online gambling companies might need to establish offices in the EU – or EU companies establish themselves in the UK – to provide their services without restrictions. They might become subjects to higher taxes on profit and less access to foreign employees. However, nothing will change immediately from the perspective of the customer.

Gambling companies have taken advantage of the EU in various ways, including establishing themselves in countries that have better taxing rules and cheap employment. For instance, most online casinos are based in European countries where wages are lower than the market average, such as Romania and Bulgaria. That enables them to employ individuals for less money than the case would be. Various bookmakers in the UK have been able to use the EU to sell their services to EU countries without additional tariffs.

In conclusion

Finally, the best-case scenario views Brexit as having less significance in the online gambling industry. It is possible to make several exceptions, which would enable gambling companies to keep working with UK gamblers based on other European nations. On the other hand, Brexit could have a tremendous negative impact on online betting companies.

If a UK betting company wants to operate in the European Union market after Brexit, it will require to adhere to all relevant procedures and rules, and vice versa. As indicated earlier, the most significant challenges will most likely be procedural, and that means solving them would be a matter of negotiation. Only time will tell the impact of Brexit on the online gambling industry, but right now, we should remain optimistic.


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