Gambling business in Belgium
Gambling in Belgium is legal entertainment. The organization of the gambling business has been authorized since May 7, 1999. Online gambling has been legalized since 2002. The Belgian Gambling Commission is in charge of regulating the gambling market and issuing licenses.
Today, the country operates:
According to 2015 data, the gross income from the gambling business in Belgium amounted to 360.1 million EUR, of which 54.6 million is the income of bookmakers.
Belgium gambling legislation
Belgian law permits the organization and provision of gambling. Any entertainment in the course of which bets are placed are considered as such. Their list includes:
Gambling does not include sports events themselves. Also, card and board games at carnivals and fairs and those organized for the purpose of charity are not considered gambling.
Any activity in the field of gambling is permissible only with a license issued by the Belgian Gaming Commission. Advertising of unlicensed establishments and participation in games on such sites is punishable by law.
Gambling regulators and laws
The Belgian Gaming Commission regulates the activities of gambling sites. The Commission operates in accordance with the Law on Gambling, adopted on May 7, 1999, and with the Law on the Legalization of Online Gambling of 2002.
In the field of online gambling, two additional royal decrees are in force. According to the first, the operator is obliged to provide information about his name, site structure, server and contacts. The second requires the provision of information about:
Thus, the decrees require constant interaction between operators of online gambling sites with the Belgium Gaming Commission.
The provision of gambling services is taxable. The tax is 11% of the operator's gross revenue. Since July 2016, the value added tax at online casinos has been increased to 21%.
The Belgian Gambling Commission issues several types of licenses. Among them:
The type of license in Belgium is paid. A casino license costs 15,000 EUR, gambling halls - 7,500 EUR, sales and repair of gambling equipment - 2,500 EUR. A company can hold only one type of license.
An application for a license to the Belgian Gambling Commission is submitted accompanied by a number of documents. These include:
Also, in order to obtain permission to organize a gambling business, it is necessary to form an insurance capital. The amount of capital depends on the type of license:
The list of permitted gambling is regulated by royal decree. It complements the 1999 Gambling Act. Table games and automatic games are allowed in Belgium casinos. Table games include poker, baccarat, blackjack, craps, roulette, sic bo, bingo. Automatic - slots, betting terminals, video poker and others.
For establishments of different classes, there is a list of games supplied with the help of slot machines. The following slots are available in the casino:
It is allowed to place slot machines (up to 30 slot machines) and digital versions of table games in gambling halls:
No more than two machines can be placed in drinking establishments. Of the permitted games - an electronic version of billiards.
Laws protecting clients of land-based and online casinos
Citizens over the age of 21 have the right to visit casinos and gambling halls. Persons over 18 years of age can play machines in drinking establishments and place bets. In all types of establishments, except for casinos, payments are made in cash. Bank cards are accepted only in land-based establishments and online casino sites, if the transaction amount exceeds 10,000 EUR.
Bets in casinos and gambling halls are accepted with coupons or chips. They are purchased for real money. Prize coupons and chips can also be exchanged for real money in establishments. The only bets accepted in real currency are sports betting.
The limits for bets, losses and wins are determined by the King of Belgium:
Any violation of the Gambling Act by operators is punishable by a penalty of one month to three years. A fine of EUR 0.64-2 478 will also be charged. In the event of a repeated violation, the penalties are doubled, the money of the institution is also seized and the equipment for gambling is confiscated.
Online gambling in Belgium
Online gambling has been allowed in Belgium since 2002. A +, B + and F1 + licenses are only issued to individuals or companies who are physically represented. That is, to organize online sports betting, you must have a license from an F1 bookmaker and own at least one real betting point.
The popularity of online gambling is growing every year. The growth in demand can be traced by analyzing the annual profit reports of online establishments. Thus, in 2014, the revenue of online casinos amounted to 54 million EUR. This is twice the income reported in the 2013 report. Online gambling halls brought in 49.8 million EUR in 2015, and bookmakers that accept bets on sites - 46.3 million EUR.
To date, the following are registered in Belgium:
The most popular online casinos providing services in Belgium are:
In addition to online slots, bets and table games, other gambling entertainment is also popular in Belgium. These include bingo, bingo and fantasy sports. Also, the popularity of mobile casinos has been growing recently.
Popular slot machines
In Belgium, the most popular slots are modern slots with numerous bonuses, plot and 3D animation. The list of favorite slots for online users includes products from Betsoft, NetEnt, Pragmatic Play, NYX Gaming and QuickSpin. Among them:
Among the machines with digital table games, the Belgians prefer the products of NetEnt, Playtech and iSoftBet. Analyzing the lists of popular applications in online casinos in Belgium, we note that games with a high-quality visual component, a convenient control panel and various additional features are in great demand.
Even new and less well-known companies (for example, Endorphina) are more successful than the monsters of the gambling industry - Greentube and IGT. This is primarily due to the fact that the audience of gambling establishments, including online sites, is "getting younger." The number of women playing is also increasing. Unlike men, they prefer bright and varied gameplay.
Belgian casino software developers
Today, there are no well-known Belgian online slots developers in the global gambling market. Manufacturing companies working in the gambling business are mainly engaged in the creation of equipment and software for land-based casinos. These include:
Belgian Gaming Technology supplies casino equipment, distributes physical slot machines from global manufacturers, provides service and technical support.
Elaut NV (Victory & Dice Roulette) is a developer of equipment for land-based casinos. The company produces roulette and craps, creates combined platforms for table games.
GAA is a developer and supplier of board game and bingo equipment.
Seeben - Provides computer hardware and software for casinos in Belgium.
Prospects for the development of gambling business in Belgium
Today the gambling industry in Belgium is legalized and quite developed. Gambling services are delivered both in land-based establishments and online. Most of the companies represented on the Belgian gambling market are national. However, the Gambling Commission also cooperates with world renowned suppliers.
For example, Belgians use the services of the well-known poker rooms Poker Stars and Party Poker, which are not owned by national operators. Betcenter and Canadian developer Income Access launched an affiliate program last year. And the management of the reputable national brand Circus Group has entered into a partnership with the developer of software for casinos Betsoft.
The Belgian government plans to further support the integration of the national and global gambling market. At the same time, the country's legislative framework will continue to adhere to the policy of protecting users from gambling addiction, regulate permissible bets and loss limits, and blacklist dubious platforms.
The gambling business in Belgium is strictly regulated by law. Onsite and online establishments operate exclusively under licenses issued by the Belgian Gaming Commission. Every year, the commission reviews various online sites, checks their reliability and monitors the market. Suspicious or banned sites are blacklisted.
The gambling industry in Belgium generates multi-million dollar revenues and at the same time cares about the safety of consumers. The decrees of the King of Belgium regulate the limits of bets and losses within an hour. Such measures have been taken to combat gambling addiction