Sweden Loses Grip on State-Run GamblingPublished May 27, 2008 by OCR Editor
End of the road for Sweden's online gambling monopoly as government bows to EU pressure.
The Swedish government is considering selling off parts of its online gambling provider, Svenska Spel, in response to mounting pressure to comply with EU regulations.
Finance Minister, Andres Borg, is reported to have proposed the privatization of less addictive forms of gambling. The details of this proposal have not yet been defined although it is likely that lottery games, sports betting and perhaps even poker may fall under the ‘low risk' category.
This move would appear to be a strategy of escaping legal action from the EU. The Ministry of Finance has already been warned that Sweden is close to being called to appear before the European Court of Justice. The latest EU gaming inquiry is due to present its findings in mid-December.
As reported by Online Casino Reports, the state monopoly is presented as an attempt to maintain responsible gambling standards in Sweden. The EU, however, is challenging this assertion on free-trade grounds.
Although running out of options, it can be assumed that Sweden will not give up without a fight.