Is Norway on its way to more open gambling laws?

For the most part, gambling is illegal in Norway.  Norsk Rikstoto and Norsk Tipping are the only two companies that can offer gambling to Norwegian citizens.  Norsk Tipping is owned by the state and offers Keno, sports betting, lotteries and other types of gambling.  This company is operated by the Ministry of Culture and Church affairs which determines how much players can bet and what times of day the games can be played.  As of January 2011, players over the age of 18 are now allowed to play games at Norsk Tipping besides scratch card games.  Norsk Rikstoto is another state owned gambling company that offers horse race betting. 

In Norway, citizens are allowed to host parties that involve gambling as long as the games are not organized to generate a profit as a business.  Online gambling is illegal in Norway and the government has previously taken steps to prevent foreign companies from offering gambling to Norwegian citizens.  The government passed a law in June of 2010 that stopped banks from allowing Norwegian customers from using debit and credit cards at online and land-based casinos across the globe. 

The new government coalition that has recently been voted in plans to reduce the restrictions on gambling in Norway and even open up the market to online casinos.  While there is still no solid legislation that has been drafted and enacted to ease the gambling restrictions, it is likely that the Norwegian gambling market will soon be more open.  New legislation may allow citizens to play at international casinos and/or allow foreign online casinos to legally operate in Norway. 

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