Online Gambling under EU Law: Strolling Between Controlled Expansion and Genuine Diminution of Gambling Opportunities

Janja Hojnik

Abstract


This article outlines some of the ambiguities arising from the endeavours of the EU Court to offer the national courts sufficiently clear interpretation of EU rules on free movement of services in respect of various national restrictions of online gambling that would enable them to make rulings in increasingly high numbers of cases in which foreign providers are restricted from accessing markets of EU Member States. It is submitted that this casuistic approach by the Court should not be considered as satisfying and that harmonising instruments should be adopted by the EU legislators, instead. Yet however, this is less realistic than ever before, as the Commission in situation of a total lack of the Member States« consensus stepped away from its efforts to pave the way to at least minimum standards of gambling offerings and provision of customers« protection, leaving it further to the EU and national courts to balance between controlled expansion and genuine diminution of gambling opportunities so as to weigh between free movement of services and opposing legitimate aims of the Member States.

Spletne igre na srečo po pravu EU: vijuganje med nadzorovanim širjenjem in pristnim omejevanjem priložnosti za igranje na srečo

Članek izpostavlja nekatere nejasnosti, ki izhajajo iz prizadevanj Sodišča EU, da nacionalnim sodiščem ponudi dovolj jasno razlago pravil EU o prostem pretoku storitev v povezavi z različnimi nacionalnimi omejitvami spletnega igranja na srečo, kar naj jim omogoči odločanje v vse večjem številu zadev, v katerih so tuji prireditelji iger na srečo omejevani pri dostopanju na trg držav članic EU. Avtorica izpostavlja, da kazuistični pristop Sodišča ne bi smel veljati kot zadovoljujoč in da bi bilo namesto tega potrebno sprejeti harmonizacijski akt na ravni EU. Vendar pa je to danes manj verjetno kot kadarkoli prej, saj je Komisija v razmerah zelo raznolikih interesov držav članic odstopila od pobud za postavitev tudi minimalnih standardov prirejanja iger na srečo v EU ter varovanja potrošnikov, ki igrajo na srečo, s čimer še naprej prepušča Sodišču EU in nacionalnim sodiščem nalogo, da postavljajo ravnotežje med nadzorovanim širjenjem in pristnim omejevanjem iger na srečo, s čimer bodo tudi vzpostavljala ravnotežje med prostim pretokom storitev in nasprotujočim zakonitim ciljem držav članic.


Keywords


digital market, online betting, free movement of services, public interest, justifying restrictions on foreign provision of gambling

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