The European Commission supports EU countries’ efforts to modernise their national online gambling legal frameworks, in particular in the framework of administrative cooperation between gambling regulatory authorities. It also provides support to ensure a high level of protection for consumers and vulnerable people, including minors. In the area of standardisation, we requested the European Committee for Standardisation to develop a European voluntary standard on reporting in support of the supervision of online gambling services by national regulatory authorities.
The European Commission adopted a decision in April 2018 requesting the European Committee for Standardisation to draft a European standard on reporting in support of supervision of online gambling services by the gambling regulatory authorities in EU countries.
Standardisation in this field aims to develop a voluntary tool to facilitate the flow of information between regulatory authorities in EU countries and the operators and suppliers. It would define the core elements for reporting purposes. The standard would be without prejudice to the scope of competence of EU country authorities in the regulation of online gambling and would not impose any obligation on them to introduce reporting requirements or to authorise or deny authorisation to any operators or suppliers.
The Commission decided to close all open infringements and complaints in the sector on 7 December 2017.
On 27 November 2015, gambling regulatory authorities of EEA Member States signed a cooperation arrangement to enhance administrative cooperation. The cooperation arrangement follows other initiatives announced in the Communication, 'Towards a comprehensive European framework for online gambling'.
The arrangement covers a number of different areas:
The cooperation arrangement is accompanied by files ('gateways') on the participating countries. These gateways provide information on the role and remit of national authorities, areas they would like to share information on, competences of other national authorities with regards to gambling, as well as any limitations in laws e.g. regarding data protection.
In 2014, the Commission adopted the Recommendation on principles for the protection of consumers and players of online gambling services and the prevention of minors from gambling. The recommendation encourages EU countries to ensure a high level of protection for consumers and minors through the adoption of principles for online gambling services and for responsible advertising and sponsorship.
In 2012, the European Commission adopted the Communication 'Towards a comprehensive European framework on online gambling' , accompanied by a staff working paper. Based on an in-depth public consultation, this Communication sets out an action plan to enhance clarity on gambling issues throughout the EU for national authorities, operators, related industries such as media service providers, and consumers.
The Commission set up a group of experts on gambling services in 2012, with a mandate expiring in 2018. This group provided the Commission with advice and expertise for the preparation of policy initiatives. It also facilitated the exchange of regulatory experience and good practice between EU countries.