November 2, 2009 (CAP Newswire) — News from European media source Swiss-Press.com relates two different stories of online gaming regulation in two European countries, Norway and Hungary.
In Norway, all online gambling is currently prohibited, the story relates. But the state-controlled monopolies that own the country’s land-based casinos, Norsk Tipping and Norsk Rikstoto, are considering allowing games to be played online.
At the moment, Norway, like the U.S., basically enforces its online gambling ban by penalizing the financial institutions that enable gaming. The government is reportedly very wary of online casinos, since Norway has a high percentage of citizens with access to the Internet and therefore, it is felt, the country would be at risk for the development of higher-than-usual “problem gambling” issues.
On the other hand, the Eastern European nation of Hungary is about to begin enforcement of a new law that would effectively ban online poker. This comes at a time when the country has developed into a nation with one of the continent’s highest rates of Internet poker playing. But a new law about to go into effect officially labels Internet poker as a game of chance, and thereby forbids private companies from offering the game, instead giving the state exclusive rights to it. And, it’s feared that the state will then decided to simply not offer online poker, thereby stripping Hungarians of their right to play online.
(Meanwhile, Poland is also in the midst of a huge gambling scandal, that isn’t really connected with the online industry, but is interesting nonetheless. Read about it here.