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Italy Nearing Approval of Betting Exchanges

The Council of State in Italy has informally approved regulations to permit betting exchanges, clearing the last legal obstacle for online exchange providers such as Betfair to launch in a regulated market, Casino Choice reported.

Several amendments were added to the proposal by judges in Rome’s Palazzo Spada that are designed to protect minors and those gamblers wishing to exclude themselves or place limits on their wagers. The regulations will become effective once the Minister of France signs and publishes the decree on the Official Gazette.

The new regulations call for operators to charge up to ten percent commission on matched bets at a tax rate of 20% levied by the Italian government. The minimum bet for both back and lay wagers is set at 50 euro cents, with winnings allowed per wager not to exceed €10,000.

Betfair and other betting exchanges are hoping to enter the Italian market by year’s end. Only a signature of approval by the Minister and the game platform to be implemented by SOGEI need be finalized. However, notification of the decree to the EC and an opinion by the Council of State may not occur in a speedy fashion, as other products are also waiting to be implemented. Online slots, virtual betting, fast-fold poker, expanded sports betting, and new regulations for online bingo are all in the EC’s launch queue. Therefore, the actual launch date for betting exchanges in Italy is uncertain.

Betfair’s exchange in Italy has been shuttered since last year by the AAMS after Italian gamblers were offered games through instead of–a violation of its license.

Microgame, Italy’s leading software provider and network, is ready to launch its new People’s IBEX platform that includes horse-race wagering, fixed odds betting, poker and skill games.

Residents of Italy who played poker at Full Tilt are still waiting to be paid and no deal has yet been reached between AAMS and PokerStars–Full Tilt’s new owner. Part of the problem in reimbursement negotiations is that Full Tilt was not licensed in the Italian market. AAMS recently updated its blacklisted gambling websites in the country, adding 57 sites and increasing the total of unlicensed websites to 4,215.


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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.