Online gambling no more within the scope of Consumer Rights
The RGA, Remote Gambling Association Limited represents online gambling operators mostly from Europe, who are some of the world’s largest stock market-listed and licensed, safeguarding their rights and giving them a single voice for all kinds of issues. One of their main objectives is making the industry secure, well-regulated and protecting customer’s rights and interests while they enjoy responsible gambling.
The European Commission’s (EC) decision to set up a Consumer Right’s Directive by specifying general guidelines and requirements for customer interacting businesses was welcomed by the RGA. Although issues like underage prevention and problem gambling are taken care of by the national regulatory authorities, the Directive would have made practices uniform for all the European nations.
This however was not to be, since some Council Member States in charge of finalizing the document succeeded in getting all forms of gambling, excluded from the Directive’s ambit. This move has upset the RGA, since players will be deprived of additional protection.
The RGA blames the member states for hampering pan European consumer rights policies just so that state owned operators would not have any additional responsibilities. Such exclusions also do not match with the tenets of the Unfair Commercial Practices Directive which includes gambling services. A recent instance was the warning given to German States by the European Court of Justice for engaging in advertising state owned gambling operators but preventing private operators from entering the market stating consumer protection. RGA is against online operator’s claim that their products facilitate in winning chance games.
Chief Executive of RGA, Clive Hawkswood, in a scathing press release has expressed his disappointment against the exclusion of online gambling from the Consumer Rights Directive indicating that some member States will go to any lengths to monopolize markets, even hurting customers rights. The same parties that falsely accusing European private- sector gambling industries of not wanting regulation do the best they can of avoiding the EU themselves.