The Belgian authorities in charge of online gambling regulations and laws have caused an uproar in the iGaming industry by imposing a new deposit limit on to all Belgian players.
The new measure, considered very controversial by players and casino operators, imposes a 500€ weekly ceiling per player in all online gaming platforms operating with a Belgian license.
Without further ado, online gaming operators in Belgium, represented by BAGA (The Belgian association of gambling operators) have unanimously decided to challenge this arbitrary decision before the courts.
According to the Belgian commission at the source of this new restrictive measure, the primary purpose of this limitation is to promote the well-being of consumers, who are often the direct or indirect victims of abusive betting. Building on the fact that problematic players are often inclined to spend more money than they can afford to.
On the other hand, according to game operators, the major problem is the generalization of the measure. The restriction makes no distinction between responsible players and those at risk, or between players who spend beyond their budget and those who have the financial means to support their playing habit.
Besides, it seems that the Belgian Online Gaming Commission took the unilateral decision without consulting the committees, and various organizations representing casinos operating legally with a Belgian license.
The Belgian authorities’ decision to impose a 500€ weekly limit is not unique in Europe. Lately, we've reported many new preventive measures imposed by gambling commissions in different countries across Europe. These regulations are applied in different ways, in the ultimate attempt to supervise and limit the excesses encountered in online casinos and other betting establishments.
Across the English Channel, the UKGC has started enforcing the amendment prohibiting the use of credit cards in both online and land-based gaming establishments. With this restriction, the only options left for UK players is to deposit by wire transfers or to use the few eWallet platforms still available.
On the other hand, this new reality may give casino providers and betting establishments a much-needed kick to make changes. For example, new payment methods such as Trustly’s Pay N Play, or iDEAL as used by casinos in the Netherlands could be introduced to the British public. Pay N Play Casinos offer greater flexibility by allowing users to play without having to open an account.
The neighboring German authorities recently prohibited the use of PayPal as a deposit method in online casinos. At the same time, they are constantly putting tremendous pressure on German banks to imposing new restrictions on expenses related to gambling.