Sweden update: timeline revealed

Guest post by Maria McDonald of Nordic Gambling

As many are aware by now, Sweden has finally revealed its plans for the long-awaited overhaul of the country’s gambling framework, including a licensing system for online gambling. The products included in the scope of the law are online casino, online poker, online bingo as well as online and land-based betting. The proposed level of taxation is 18 % of the gross gambling revenue.

The government is showing a will to quickly implement the new legislation after years of delay. The legislation is planned to enter into force on January 1, 2019 with the licensing window opening on July 1, 2018.

In a newsletter sent out on February 19, 2018, the Swedish Gambling Authority informed about its preparations ahead of the re-regulation and also specified the following timeline:

• The new gambling act is expected to be introduced in parliament in March 2018 together with some secondary legislation that will supplement the main bill.

• In mid-March 2018, the Gambling Authority is hoping to distribute both amended versions of the previously published regulations containing licensing requirements, and additional new regulations which will be subject to public consultation.

• The law is expected to be voted on by parliament in May 2018. This would be followed by a meeting organised by the Gambling Authority to inform on the licence application process.

In the same newsletter, the Director General of the Swedish Gambling Authority, Camilla Rosenberg, said that which operators will finally be granted a licence will depend on “the quality of the applications and when they will be submitted to the regulator”. This phrase seems to suggest that a deadline may be introduced before which applications must be submitted in order for operators to have a valid licence from January 1, 2019.

The Swedish Gambling Authority has previously issued several draft regulations, most notably “Regulation on online gambling and betting”, “Regulation on Responsible Gambling” and “Regulation regarding the Application for a License”. The latter includes a list of documents that shall be appended to the licence application. Technical standards were also submitted to the European Commission at the beginning of February and are available in English here.

In light of the above, Sweden’s plan to re-regulate very much seems to be on track. In order to be amongst the first licensees on January 1, 2019, it is time for operators to start preparations! Nordic Gambling is happy to provide you with more details and assist you in the new market.

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