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France, Spain, Italy and Portugal Gaming Regulators Ally

The regulatory bodies of four European countries have joined forces and pledged to work together in sharing market data, combating corruption, discussing regulatory standards, and possibly pooling players for enhanced liquidity.

A two-day meeting in Paris was attended by officials from France’s regulator ARJEL, the Italian Customs and Monopolies Agency, the General Directorate for the Regulation of Gambling (DGOJ) in Spain, and Portugese regulators. Resulting from the sit-down was an agreement for the need of transparency and for ethical standards to fight criminal activity and gambling addiction, eGaming Review reported.

“We have laid the foundations for strong international cooperation to combat the illegal supply of online games,” said Luigi Magistro, deputy director of the Customs and Monopolies Authority . “We have also launched a study to identify the best measures to be taken to prevent the phenomena of compulsive gambling, an issue on which, like Italy, the other countries are strongly committed. “

The regulators from each country have agreed to produce biannual reports related to their individual markets and will hold meetings to go over the data. The first such sit-down is set for Lisbon within the first six months of 2013, while the second will be held in Rome in the latter half of the year.

Declining player traffic has become an issue in countries such as France and Italy, whose segregated player pools would greatly benefit from international liquidity. In a press release following the two-day meeting, ARJEL stated that within a new framework developed by the participating European countries, “agreements aimed at facilitating exchanges, particularly of operators’ liquidity, could be reached.”

German regulatory authorities also sat in on the discussions and alluded to the possibility of working in conjunction with the UK Gambling Commission in the future.


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Charles Rettmuller

Charles has been an avid poker player for a number of years, both live and online. He holds a degree in journalism and previously worked as a reporter for a Chicago-based newspaper. Charles joined the PokerUpdate team in early 2012 and writes daily news articles for the site.