RGA Pushing U.S. On Prohibition

The Remote Gambling Association filed a complaint with the European Commission alleging the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act restrains trade and allows U.S. companies to engage in activities foreign companies are prohibited from engaging in.

The RGA represents European online casino operators. In the complaint filed with the European Commission, it specifically cites wagering online on horse racing as an activity that is allowed to continue in the U.S., but only if U.S. companies are operating the betting sites.

Of particular concern for the U.S. is that the European companies are greater in number and revenue than those operating out of Antigua. The U.S. continues to discuss a resolution with Antigua for prohibiting its operators access to U.S. citizens, but negotiations with the European nations would likely center around considerably larger sums of cash.

Antigua was successful in bringing a complaint before the World Trade Organization, and it cited the same complaint as did the RGA: specifically, that the UIGEA allows U.S. companies to engage in business that is prohibited for foreign companies. This practice is contrary to free trade obligations that U.S. has agreed to under the General Agreement on Trade and Tariffs.

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