Those in the industry who continue to derive revenue from Norwegian players continue to pay close attention to local developments. Recently, the Government announced measures to adapt the monopolistic regime and a small number of operators received correspondence from the authorities, over the Summer, urging them to exit the market.
Category Archive: Norway
by Cecilie Haavik
The Norwegian Ministry of Cultural Affairs has sent a matter for public hearing which concerns allowing large scale private lotteries in Norway.
The Ministry suggests that up to five new private lottery participants shall be allowed to arrange large scale lotteries with a turnover up to NOK 300 million annually.
The proposal has the following main suggestions:
- If there are more than five applicants that satisfy the conditions set by the Authority, the five permits will be allotted by drawing lots.
- The permits shall be valid for seven years.
- Only socially useful and humanitarian organizations that have considerable international activities may apply for a permit.
- The lotteries that will be arranged must not lead to gambling addiction.
- At least half of each lottery’s turnover after deductions for gains/prizes must be paid to the ideal purpose.
The Ministry of Culture also proposes new regulations for marketing of such lotteries.
The Norwegian Government has recently appointed a committee which shall report on the consequences if the Norwegian lotteries and gaming monopoly were to be repealed. The committee shall amongst others consider whether if one were to introduce a license arrangement for gaming companies to operate lotteries and money gaming in Norway, would lead to increased gambling addiction in Norway. An important part of the work will consist of charting the present arrangements in Denmark, Sweden, Finland and the UK. It is desirable to look at experience gained in these countries and consider positive and negative consequences of the schemes that these countries have chosen.
The aim of the work is to arrive at an arrangement whereby that gambling on the Internet which is already directed at Norwegian citizens can be brought into regulated forms.
If a license scheme is introduced, foreign gambling companies will also be able to apply for a license in Norway.
Norwegian athletes from a variety of sports, including UK Premier League football players, NHL players, cross country skiers and pole vaulters have signed sponsorship deals with various gambling operators. Norway practices a state-owned monopoly through Norsk Tipping on all gambling activities and the bulk of the proceeds from Norsk Tipping is plowed back into sports and culture. Norsk Tipping therefore stands out as a dominant beneficiary and money source for Norwegian sports both on a grass root level and for premier athletes.
Norway: Texas Hold’em allowed under the Norwegian Penal Code but still illegal pursuant to the Lottery Act
The Norwegian Appellate Court (Nw: Lagmannsretten) (the Court) recently handed down it’s decision in a case where the Oslo Regional Prosecutor’s Office had charged a person with hosting a gambling event and confiscation of NOK 10,000 which were the results of a game of Texas Hold’em No Limit. The question was whether or not it was illegal to arrange a tournament where Texas Hold’Em was played and if this particular game was a game of chance pursuant to the Norwegian Penal Code § 383 and 299.