Finansdepartementet, the Swedish Ministry of Finance, has confirmed to the European Commission (EC) its proposals to amend the 2018 Gambling Act.
The updates to the legislation comes after ‘Spelmarknadsutredningen’, an independent inquiry of Sweden’s re-regulated gambling marketplace in 2020, conducted by Social Democrat MP Anna-Lena Sörenson.
Stakeholders in the Swedish market responded to year-1 developments of the gambling market under Gambling Act’s regulatory framework, providing further recommendations on safer gambling, consumer protections and further market integrity provisions.
Following a review of stakeholder submissions, the Ministry of Finance has accepted amendments to the Gambling Act approved by Sweden’s Law Council – that aim to be passed into law by July 1, 2023.
Finansdepartmentet has notified the EC that Gambling Act amendments will require licensees to disclose all information to Swedish Police should a customer be suspected of committing a gambling-related crime.
Further changes ensure that Swedish payment services providers (PSPs) must disclose information used in processing transactions for unlicensed operators.
The PSP provision is required as Sweden’s Law Council has backed recommendations for gambling inspectorate Spelinspektionen to be granted direct powers to order financial payment blocks, without the need to secure administrative court approvals.
Further market integrity provisions will allow the Swedish Sports Federation to process operator data (if required) for the governing body to carry out investigations into match-fixing and sports corruption
The EC will review the proposed amendments to ensure that Gambling Act changes do not infringe upon EU competition rules.
The Swedish government aims to complete stage-2 of gambling market reforms ahead of Sweden’s General Elections on 9 September.
Moreover, this week Sweden’s Moderate Party (liberal conservatives) submitted a provisional mandate to the Riksdag detailing its plans to overhaul the gambling regime.
The party is seeking to challenge Sweden’s Social Democratic government via a right-wing coalition and, as part of its campaigning efforts, announced that it would split state-owned gambling operator Svenska Spel and sell its ‘competitive gaming unit’.
The Moderate’s mandate stated that “running a gambling business was no longer a state requirement”. Further proposals called for a softening of bonus restrictions offered by licensed operators and removing gambling from the ‘adjusted moderation’ category for marketing to national consumers.