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A fresh start for the Finnish gambling industry

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The Finnish government plans to break free from the gambling monopoly and introduce a new licensing system.

Some regions forbid online gambling, others heavily regulate it, and then there are those who monopolise it. For the Finnish casino industry, there has been a gambling monopoly up to now, but with a new government comes new rules.

One of the focus points of the new government in control is to dismantle the monopoly and bring in a new licensing system.

A big change for Finnish gambling

As the old government resigned in late June, a new one was set to be appointed. The new government wasted no time in making a statement regarding the gaming industry. The new government declared that it is determined to end the current monopoly over the gaming market and aims to implement a new licensing model by 2026.

The Finnish national betting agency Veikkaus Oy holds an exclusive betting license on lotteries and sports betting. They’ve been in control of the gaming industry since the merger in 2017 with Fintoto and RAY. As can be expected, they are not as pleased with the news as many other companies.

That being said, it should have been considered a given since a study released in April by the former government recommended overhauling the monopoly system.

What to expect?

Currently, there is no information on what the new system will look like. However, the new government has stated that there will be online casino sports betting licenses. All licenses will come with a mandatory and singular self-exclusion option. This will be a set requirement in the licensing process.

According to the government, the license model will be based on careful investigations of the social effects of the reform, especially with the frequency of gambling problems.

The plan is to implement a hybrid system that will be similar to that of Sweden gambling regulations, where the monopoly and licensing systems are combined. It will create a system involving online casino games and wagering requirements.

With the new system, it is likely that Veikkaus Oy will keep its exclusive right to slots, brick-and-mortar casinos, and betting, along with lottery and raffle games. The belief is that Veikkaus will be split into two legal entities where one will work the monopoly services and the other the licensed gambling market.

Key focus points

The ultimate goal of the new system will be preventing and reducing gambling harm. One of the points noted in the study was the increase in gambling-related harm outside of the monopoly. As such, the Finnish gambling regulations will be focused on the responsible gambling environment to avaid gambling harm.

The belief is that with the new program, there will be marketing available for licensed gambling services, but it will be very strict. Content will have to be moderated and responsible.

When it comes to marketing, there will be measures in place to get consent from consumers. Players will have the option of blocking gambling on all platforms with licensed gaming services. There is also talk of restrictions on the availability of slot machines, making them available only at select and supervised establishments.

At the present time, only Veikkaus Oy is allowed to market gambling services. The National Police Board of Finland monitors the gambling market and has already acted against various parties violating the rules. The marketing ban will remain intact for the next few years until the new bill is enforced.

Published: July 18, 2023

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Article by Polly

CasinoWow Contributor

Hey guys, my name is Polina but my friends and colleagues call me Polly. I am truly passionate about online casino gaming and exploring the different online gambling experiences. I'm really into diving deep into topics and researching all the details. My aim is to gather the best information and write interesting articles for all the readers at CasinoWow.

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