The Netherlands is known as one of the most permissive societies in the Western world, with rules and laws that are far more lenient than those in other European countries. However, there are certain areas where the Netherlands are just as strict as their fellow EU states or even more so, and online gambling is one of them.
It can’t be denied that the popularity of online gambling has grown significantly over the past few years. As people are showing a greater interest in playing casino games online, the online gambling market continues to expand at an unprecedented rate. Yet the Dutch have made little progress in this area compared to other jurisdictions. Luckily, things have started moving in the right direction for some time now and they’re about to change even more in the near future.
So, if you want to learn more about the current state of the online gambling market in the Netherlands and its future prospects, you’ll find out everything there is to know below.
The rocky road to the Remote Gambling Act
The Netherlands has a long history of gambling, with the first regulations regarding the sector being drafted in 1964. But the problem is nothing has changed since then. The Dutch have the same outdated laws and regulations since the 60’s when the internet wasn’t a thing yet, so there are no rules addressing online gambling.
The first intention of moving things forward came in 2012 when the new gambling authority in the Netherlands, the Kansspelautoriteit or KSA was established. The plan was to revise the initial gambling law, make the necessary changes to ensure a better gambling environment for everyone and include new regulations regarding the activity of online casinos as well. However, authorities failed to take immediate action and for years they only focused on penalizing illegal gambling entities.
Finally, in February 2019 the Senate passed the Remote Gambling Act that would mark a new beginning for the gambling industry in the Netherlands. Fast forward to March 2021 and the law was ready to enter into effect. This means operators are now able to apply for a license and later this year fully legal gambling sites will go live, ready to welcome their players.
While other providers might focus on exploring the potential applications of AI in the casino industry to improve user experience, operators in the Netherlands are going to be busy studying the new permit requirements that will allow them to provide casino games online legally. It’s going to take some effort and implication on their part in order to comply with the current rules and regulations in the industry.
Online casinos will have to meet strict requirements if they want to receive a license since the Remote Gambling Act places a great deal of importance on player protection as follows:
- All casinos, both online and offline, are required to use a central register (CRUKS) as an instrument to prevent gambling addiction. Players will be registered here with their social security number and they’ll be able to exclude themselves from legal casino sites, blocking their access to the sites and stopping the operator from targeting them with ads.
- Marketing and promotional strategies will be strictly regulated.
- Direct monitoring of all the casino sites’ activities by the KSA through its control database or CDB.
New opportunities for operators
The adoption of the Remote Gambling Act means there will be new opportunities for existing operators in the Dutch market as well as for foreign casino providers. A study conducted in 2019 revealed there are more than 80 operators interested in receiving a license and entering the Dutch online gambling market.
This also means players will have a wider variety of online casino games to choose from and plenty of opportunities to test their gambling skills legally. They’ll be able to enjoy all the interesting features online casinos use to attract players. For example, no deposit bonuses are being used by casino players to get in the game and enhance their online gambling experience. With more operators on the market, these bonuses and promotions are about to become even more appealing.
Casino games Dutch players enjoy
As you can already assume, not all casino games enjoy the same level of popularity and that applies to both the online and the offline casino environment. When it comes to online gambling, there are a few games that hold supremacy. Dutch payers have a soft spot for roulette, blackjack and slot games. sports betting is also a very popular form of entertainment in the Netherlands.
Interestingly enough, people’s interest in online poker has experienced a decline in the past few years. That’s probably due to the rising number of other casino games that offer far more interesting features and ample possibilities for innovation, such as slots.
There’s a wide range of slot games on the market to suit all tastes and interests. If you want to enjoy slot games without the risk of losing money, you can play online slot machines for free at our website. That will help you get familiarized with online slots and practice before you decide if you want to play for real money or not.
The fact that Dutch authorities took their time in addressing the need for regulations in the online gambling environment didn’t diminish people’s interest in online casino games. On the contrary, players looked for alternatives, which led to an increase in revenues from gambling activities.
As you can see, Dutch players are more than ready to welcome licensed online casino operators in the market. Opening the market to new casino providers will benefit both players and the economy. All these aspects considered, we’re about to witness the beginning of a new era for the gambling industry in the Netherlands, one that is going to exceed all expectations.