The Netherlands is now a regulated Online Poker market

The Dutch government passed a Gambling Act that forces poker rooms to obtain an online gambling license to legally operate in the country or else they must exit. The problem is that it has to be done by the end of the month and there's a six-month cool-off period to the poker rooms that did not manage to obtain the license in time before they can apply for it again. Read the full article to know which poker rooms might come and go and more.

The Netherlands is now a regulated Online Poker market image

The Netherlands' authorities have delivered an ultimatum to all online poker sites operating in the country: either to comply with the newly effective regulation (effective October 1st) or they must exit the country, suffering heavy fines if persisting to operate in the Netherlands without complying.

Thus, a few online poker rooms that are currently operating are expected to leave the country - such as PokerStars - if they are not able to fulfill the requirements and obtain an online gambling license to become legal in the Netherlands by the end of the month. If that happens, although PokerStars is likely to later obtain the online gambling license and return to the country (its track record shows it is in favor of complying with local government regulations), there's a cool-off period of six months, during which the operator cannot apply for a license. Others in a similar situation are Bwin and Unibet.

Meanwhile, PokerStars' biggest competitor, GGPoker, who has this year become the biggest online poker room in terms of traffic, is likely to return to the Netherlands. They exited two years ago but they managed to avoid fines entirely during the time they were present in the Netherlands online poker market. It would be very advantageous for them to be one of the first poker rooms to obtain an online gambling license by the Dutch government and operate in the Dutch market while PokerStars is absent. Other poker sites that might soon become legal in the Netherlands include the iPoker Network and 888poker. 

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The list of poker rooms that managed to obtain the online gambling license to legally operate in The Netherlands will be released by the end of the month.

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