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   Sunday, March 03 2024 
The Council of Ministers give the go-ahead - Online poker regulation in Portugal

Four years after the request made by the Europe’s troika (European Commission, European Central Bank and the International Monetary Bank) about online gambling regulation, Portugal’s Council of Ministers approved a draft law on February 26, the main objective of which is to have a regulated online poker market within the country. As a reminder, Europe’s Troika did requested so to Portugal with a view to give a boost to the country’s economic activities. It is believed that this freshly-approved gambling bill will generate additional tax revenues of € 25 million. The same bill will also defined the rules on advertisements related to gambling activities.

All eyes are now on the final say/signature by Portugal’s President Aníbal Cavaco Silva. Once signed and published in the country’s official bulletin, the bill will immediately be effective, that is, an open door to a regulated poker market, just like what is already run in Spain, Italy and France. The government expects to issue the first licenses on online poker, online casino and ibetting early in the third quarter of 2015. All gambling licenses granted by the government will be valid for three years and will be renewable. The Turismo de Portugal (ITP), an institute linked to the Ministry of Finance, will be handling the control and regulation of the said market. It remains to be seen whether Portugal will ring-fence its market, as France, Italy and Spain do, or establish an international liquidity-sharing agreement, following the footsteps of the UK and Denmark.

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