Every since breaking away from the Soviet Union and becoming an independent country, Estonia seemed to have embraced gambling. Currently, both online and land-based gambling is legal and regulated within the country, making it one of Europe’s most exciting gambling markets.
In this article, we take a quick look at the history of gambling regulations in the country and how it currently regulates online casinos within its legal jurisdiction.
Gambling regulations in Estonia
The history of gambling regulations in Estonia starts with the Lottery Act of 1994 and the Gambling Act of 1995. While they introduced a lot of legal ideas that still form a part of the legislature like the four major categories of gambling, it was the Gambling Act that came into power in 2009 which regulates gambling in the country today.
The latest Gambling Act was considered a milestone in the regulations since it provided a framework for regulating the rapidly-developing online gambling industry.
All the laws required the casino to obtain a license to offer its services in the country; the license is granted and regulated by the Estonian Tax and Customs Board.
How Estonia regulates online casinos
By 2010, the country had started regulating online gambling. This was, in part, due to the global economic crisis in 2008-09 with the government eying the new taxation revenue. Initially, only local sites were given permission to run online casinos in the country but within a year, international companies were allowed to offer their services too, as long as they obtain a license.
This is why all online casinos in Estonia are licensed as the government has started blocking unlicensed online casinos that were operating in the country.
In order to obtain a license, a few requirements need to be met such as a share capital of 1 million euros, a clean criminal record, a physical office in the country, and compliance with the local laws. Additionally, the company also has to pay a one-time fee for the license and a 5% tax on profits annually.
An exciting European market for online gambling!
Even though the online gambling market in the country is relatively new, it is still an excellent opportunity for both local and international gambling companies. With a regulatory framework that’s designed to help both the players and the operators, Estonia has proven to be a great example of positive gambling.