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  •  Portugal finally approves the legalisation of online games

Portugal finally approves the legalisation of online games



It took about four years, but this time it is final: the Council of Ministers in Portugal finally approved the proposed law to reform the online gaming market.
This text includes regulations for the legalisation and regulation of this activity on the Internet.
It should become effective before the end of 2015.
With this liberalisation, the government hopes to garner additional tax revenues of around €25 million a year.

A text under influence

In a press release that was issued last week, the Portuguese Government indicated that the bill on the regulation of online gambling will be modelled after the best international practices and recommendations on gaming regulations that were issued by the European Commission.


The first licenses are going to be issued in the third quarter of 2015

The legislation includes not only online casino operations and online poker but also online sports betting.
It must now be signed by the president Anibal Cavaco Silva, before it will be published in the official gazette, but this is only a formality.
The country’s authorities claim that the first renewable licenses will be valid for a period of three years, and they will be issued to qualified companies in the third quarter of this year.
The regulatory authority will be Turismo de Portugal, under appointment by the Ministry of Finance.
The organisation will create a special commission to handle all issues related to the regulation and licensing of online gaming.

Some information about the taxes

The bill suggests a tax rate of between 15 and 30% for online casinos and poker rooms.
Sports betting sites on the Internet will have a lower tax of between 8 and 16%.
The text also includes strict regulations on advertising for gambling, with restrictions for advertisements being broadcast on television and radio.

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