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Dutch Gambling Body Warns Against Stricter Measures



Dutch Gambling Body Warns “Stricter Measures May Be Counterproductive”

Are stricter gambling regulations pushing players towards illegal markets?

Discover why the Netherlands Online Gambling Association (NOGA) believes that increased restrictions could backfire.

Learn how current Dutch gambling laws impact player behavior and the potential risks of further tightening regulations.

Stay informed about the latest developments in Dutch gambling legislation and its implications for the market.


Dutch Gambling Body Warns “Stricter Measures May Be Counterproductive”

The Netherlands Online Gambling Association (NOGA) has issued a stark warning to the country’s parliament, highlighting the potential risks of implementing stricter regulations on the gambling industry. According to newly published research by IPSOS, NOGA suggests that such measures could prove counterproductive by pushing players towards unlicensed operators, thus undermining the primary goal of Dutch gambling legislation: channelisation to the legal market.

Channelisation at Risk

The fourth Dutch Online Gambling Barometer study conducted by IPSOS revealed concerning trends among Dutch gamblers. The study found that consumers, especially those at risk of gambling addiction, might turn to unlicensed operators if faced with excessive restrictions. Alarmingly, nearly half of the at-risk gamblers surveyed expressed unwillingness to provide proof of income to gamble online.

NOGA’s director, Peter-Paul de Goeij, stressed that the main objective of Dutch gambling legislation should be to minimize the use of unlicensed providers. He pointed out that while the country currently boasts an impressive channelisation rate of 95%, meaning that 95% of consumers choose licensed online gambling providers, there remains a significant minority who gamble illegally.

“Although the 95% channelisation rate is commendable, it still leaves around 90,000 Dutch people gambling at illegal casinos—equivalent to the population of Heerlen or Hengelo,” de Goeij noted. He warned that further tightening of regulations might exacerbate this issue, particularly among at-risk players who may resort to dishonesty about their gambling behavior to evade stricter controls.


The Problem of Identifying Legal Platforms

The Barometer study also highlighted a critical issue: many consumers struggle to differentiate between licensed and unlicensed gambling platforms. Approximately 68% of players admitted they did not know how to distinguish between the two. NOGA argues that the advertising ban introduced last July, which is set to expand to social media, has made this distinction even more challenging.

“Players often have no idea whether a site is legal or not. This confusion is partly due to the advertising ban on TV, radio, and newspapers. A simple Google search leads them to numerous illegal casinos,” de Goeij explained.

Industry Concerns

VNLOK, the trade organization for licensed online gambling providers in the Netherlands, shares NOGA’s concerns. VNLOK chairman Helma Lodders emphasized the industry’s commitment to player protection, particularly for vulnerable groups like young adults. “Our top priority is the protection of players. Licensed online gambling providers have a crucial responsibility to prevent and identify risky or problematic gambling behaviors. Gambling should be a fun activity, not one that leads to problems,” Lodders stated.

Recently, the Dutch gaming affiliate trade group KVA published research indicating that minors are accessing gambling via unlicensed sites. This report has been forwarded to VNLOK, NOGA, and the Dutch gambling regulator Kansspelautoriteit (KSA), highlighting the need for better enforcement and clearer regulations.


Proposed Changes and Challenges

The Dutch gambling sector is currently facing several proposed changes, including new technical restrictions and a potential tax hike. The Dutch Advisory Board on Regulatory Burden (ATR), an independent watchdog, has criticized the proposed monthly financial risk checks on customer accounts, arguing that they represent an unnecessary technical burden for operators. The government has proposed that these checks apply when spending exceeds €350, alongside a mandatory €150 loss limit for players under 24.

Moreover, NOGA has voiced opposition to the incoming coalition government’s plans to increase gambling taxes. After six months of negotiations, the Party for Freedom (PVV), Party for Freedom and Democracy (VVD), New Social Contract party (NSC), and Farmer-Citizen Movement (BBB) have formed a coalition that proposes a “structural taxation increase” in gambling tax to 37.8%.

The Future of Dutch Gambling Regulation

As the Dutch gambling market continues to evolve, the tension between regulatory control and maintaining a robust, legal gambling industry is evident. NOGA and other industry stakeholders are calling for a balanced approach that safeguards players while ensuring that the legal market remains attractive and accessible.

The upcoming legislative changes will require careful consideration to avoid unintended consequences that could drive players towards unlicensed and potentially unsafe gambling environments. By maintaining an open dialogue between regulators, industry leaders, and consumers, the Netherlands can strive to create a gambling market that is both well-regulated and player-friendly.


In conclusion, as the Dutch gambling industry navigates these challenges, it is crucial to focus on policies that promote responsible gambling while supporting the legal market. The insights from the latest IPSOS research underscore the need for thoughtful, evidence-based regulations that balance player protection with market viability.

Stay tuned for more updates as the Netherlands continues to refine its approach to gambling regulation, ensuring a safe and enjoyable experience for all players.

Jerome, a valuable addition to the Gamingo.News team, brings with him extensive journalistic experience in the iGaming sector. His interest in the industry was sparked during his college years when he participated in local poker tournaments, eventually leading to his exposure to the burgeoning world of online poker and casino rooms. Jerome now utilizes his accumulated knowledge to fuel his passion for journalism, providing the team with the latest online scoops.

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