René Jansen, Chairman of Kansspelautoriteit (KSA), the Netherlands Gambling Authority, has endorsed the regulator’s toughened stance against unlicensed gambling activities.
Writing a blog on the KSA website, Jansen stands by the decision of Legal Protections Minister Franc Weerwind to impose a ban on untargeted gambling adverts from 1 July 2023.
Jansen has deemed the advertising ban as a necessary measure that will draw a clear distinction in what legal market operators can and can’t do when engaging with Dutch consumers.
Having applied tougher rules on Dutch operators, Jansen cited that KSA had “not lost sight of the illegal gambling market”.
“It must pay off for providers of games of chance to offer their games legally. That is only possible if we punish illegal supply harshly,” the Chairman continued.
KSA has operated a tiered fine system since the opening of the KOA market on 1 October 2021. As such, basic fines increased substantially, and for companies with a turnover of more than €15m receiving a charge of 4% of estimated turnover.
Jansen stated that the approach had shown positive results, with many illegal providers ceasing operation upon threat of periodic penalty payments and with KSA handing fines totalling nearly €28m million imposed on seven different parties last year.
This year KSA has bolstered its monitoring resources and enforcement policies to combat illegal operators – analysing website data and interactions with Dutch Ips.
Jansen concluded: “We want people in the Netherlands to be assured of a safe range of games when gambling online and to be protected against excessive participation and gambling addiction.
“In addition, we want it to continue to pay off for licensed providers to incur costs for applying for and maintaining their license. Naturally, we remain keen to ensure that license holders actually live up to this ‘playing it safe’ approach in practice.”