Gambling Policy in the European Union: Monopolies, Market Access, Economic Rents, and Competitive Pressures among Gaming Sectors in the Member States
This study examines the conflicts within the European Union regarding protected status accorded to legal commercial gaming industries and the principles of harmonization that direct EU economic policy. Member States are permitted to constrain competition for gambling services as long as the primary purpose is to protect citizens from unintended negative consequences associated with the activities. Also, because of monopoly status, high tax rates, or government ownership, many EU gaming industries have become major contributors to government coffers or for funding for “good causes.” Legal challenges by private companies trying to participate in these protected markets have led to decisions by the European Court of Justice that have questioned such protected status. A number of key economic metrics for European gaming industries are presented, and competitive dimensions of EU casino industries are examined in comparisons to trends elsewhere.
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