Online Gambling in Belgium

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Gambling rules and regulations are completely different all over the world and, moreover, they are different even within Europe. Some countries ban any kinds of gambling, some allow offline gambling activities while keeping online ones illegal, some liberal ones allow all kinds of gambling until they are licensed and regulated. On this page, we continue studying the gambling landscape in different countries and now we have Belgium on the agenda.

Belgium is one of those few European countries loyal to offline and online gambling. It’s not a surprise as this country has a long gambling history dating back to the year 1300! The first national lottery appeared here as far as in 15th century giving the burst of the whole Belgian gambling industry. Today, the government have much more control over the gambling activities but is still keeping them legal — both offline and online. Since 2002, online casinos have the right to operate in the country if they have a license for the offline gambling too. The government is only issuing the specific amount of the licenses yearly meaning not anyone interested can get it.

Unlike many other countries that wink at the unlicensed international casinos taking bets from the population, Belgium is much more strict. Companies trying to operate on the Belgian territory without the legal permission are fine together with the gamblers making bets in the illegal casinos. On the one hand, it pretty much limits the choice of the casinos for the players but on the other hand, it helps keep the gambling market safe and regulated. It doesn’t look like gamblers in Belgium are dissatisfied. Besides national online casinos, other gambling activities like horse racing and football betting are popular among the country’s residents. As many cycling events are being held in Belgium, cycling bets are also made quite often.

A lot of international online casinos were trying to dispute the strict country’s rules but looks like the government is not going to U-turn and the players will have to limit themselves to the small choice of licensed casinos. No one knows if it’s a good or a bad thing — we’ll only see it in the long run.