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European Court Rules Against German and Austrian Gaming Monopolies

By Scott Carlson, Rakeback.com Staff Reporter

Eurpean Union Court Ruling

Three rulings were handed down by the European Court of Justice (ECJ) on Wednesday against the German government run monopolies for sports betting and lotteries. The ruling could open the way to foreign gaming companies to offer their products in Germany.

The Interstate Treaty on Gambling which was passed in Germany back in 2008 to protect the country from a rampant expansion in online gambling, which is allowable under EU law. The ECJ ruled that the law was inconsistent with Germany's promotion and “intensive advertising” of its gambling operations.

The European Gambling and Betting Association (EGBA) welcomed the ruling from the ECJ. The EGBA believes that consumers are better protected in an open and regulated market, similar to what fellow EU members France and Italy do by licensing, taxing and regulating outside gaming companies.

The ECJ handed down a similar ruling Thursday against Austria's state gambling monopoly, which blocks foreign casino companies from the licensing process, saying that it is not compatible with EU law. The Austrian government had cited fighting crime as a reason for not allowing outside companies.

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