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Italy’s Regulator sends new Gambling Concession Papers to Treasury

The Italian Customs and Monopolies Agency has sent the papers highlighting the rules for new online gambling concessions to the Treasury, following the framework’s publication in April

Italy’s body responsible for regulating gambling activities in the country, the Customs and Monopolies Agency (ADM), has recently sent the files needed to outline the regulations regarding new online gambling concessions to the Treasury. 

The file transfer follows April’s submission of the new framework for online gambling licenses in the parliamentary gazette. 

The regulator has agreed upon a nine-year online gambling concessions fee of €7 million ($7.57 million) per operator. 

The figure is 35 times higher compared to the €200,000 fee that was imposed in 2018. 

Online operators looking to provide their services to domestic players will also be asked to pay 3% of their annual gross gaming revenue (GGR) after taxes. 

The spikes were deemed reasonable by the Ministry of Finance in light of the country’s changing gambling market dynamics influenced by the domination of a small number of important operators. 

The list of current operators includes Scommesse Sportive, Slot, Giochi e Casinò Online (SNAI), Lottomatica (after the acquisition of SKS365), Entain, and Flutter.

Once the new framework receives the binding opinion of the Treasury and Council of State, it is ready to be included in the country’s Decree on the Reorganisation of Gambling. 

The latter currently handles brick-and-mortar gaming topics. 

After the technical rules reach the European Commission where they will be carefully assessed, they will go through a standstill period that will last for three months. 

Operators who will receive a license will need to make sure that their games and systems will be carefully checked using third-party certification bodies. 

The ADM will also be given new sets of controls to ensure better monitoring of player funds.

ADM’s online office’s head, Antonio Giuliani, explained the agency was working on setting up a “D-day” for current gambling operators to begin collecting bets based on the new framework. 

The rest of the operators will be given up to six months to launch the new system. Giuliani reassured operators they would benefit from “equal conditions,” whether current licensees or new operators looking to get a license.

In June, Italy introduced fresh regulations regarding the management of bonuses, including new legislative criteria on the way bonuses can be used, as well as terms and conditions, banking options, and the way bonuses would count for tax purposes.

Operators have been thirsty for these changes ever since the official opening of the regulated market in 2006, arguing a lack of clarity regarding the methodology used to determine the cost of bonus rewards. 

Now, due to the new amendments, taxes will be calculated using both the bonuses applied and the stakes placed by players to meet wagering requirements and be able to cash out winnings.

Finally, the ADM, which has created and financed a research, training, and information project aimed at the National Addiction and Doping Centre of the Istituto Superiore di Sanità (the Italian Institute of Health), introduced a set process helpful for responding to palpable errors that would enable systematic corrections that would not require any court action. 

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