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PokerStars Slams German Poker Regulation Proposal

Online Poker Company Says Unregulated Market Makes “Every Player Criminal”

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Schleswig-Holstein coat of armsPokerStars.com, the world’s largest online poker operator, yesterday slammed German government proposals for the regulation of the German market for online gaming and poker and pledged to support the Schleswig-Holstein lander (state) bill instead.

Sven Stiel of PokerStars said, “Poker captivates people. Whether on ProSieben or SPORT1, in BILD or at DPA, poker has become a mass phenomenon and has arrived in German living rooms. However, not everyone is aware of this. Yet, numbers say more than a thousand words: 4,000,000 Germans play poker. The Minister Presidents want this market to remain unregulated, thus making every amateur player a criminal. Schleswig-Holstein has recognized German players’ needs and presented a realistic form of channelling.

“PokerStars will, as exemplified by Italy and France, be one of the first to apply for a license in Schleswig-Holstein and fully implement it. Player protection, jobs and channelling can be easily executed with the presented mode”

The European Gaming and Betting Association described the Schleswig-Holstein alternative bill as “a practical model.” Going on to explain that, “on the one hand, it fulfils the European Court of Justice Guidelines, thereby creating justice and fairness; on the other hand, it gives reputable gaming companies the opportunity to offer German customers secure, attractive and market-driven products in accordance with conditions that conform to European Union law.

“The existing grey market can thus be regulated, as well as securing tax revenues for sports and social projects.”