Published by CasinoTopsOnline on May 11, 2015 in Industry News

Flag of PortugalAfter more than a decade of discussions, planning and approval of bills, Portugal will finally launch a legalized online gambling market on the 28th of June 2015. 

Portugal’s Secretary of State for Tourism, Adolfo Mesquita Nunes, has confirmed that Portugal's Council of Ministers approved the long-awaited bill in March. The bill will establish a legal framework for online gambling and will enable players both inside and outside of Portugal to access the country's gaming sites.

While Portugal's parliament gave the bill the go ahead in 2014, the country's Council of Ministers felt that adjustments needed to be made before they go give their full approval. Namely the bill had to be adjusted "to combat illegal gambling, enabler of fraudulent activities and activities possibly associated with money laundering, while allowing the development of social policies through a balanced distribution of gambling revenues, to compensate the social cost.”

"The bill will proceed with the regulation of online gambling in line with the recommendations issued by the EC on this matter and the international best practices," Portugal's government stated in a press release after the meeting of its Ministers.

Now that these criteria have been met and the bill has been approved, both national and international operators will be able to apply for licenses which has been estimated to bring in more than €25 million in additional tax revenue for Portugal.

All operators applying for three-year licenses must prove that they are reputable and they will also have to submit financial guarantees before they will be allowed to launch their websites. Licenses will be available for casino games, sports betting, horse racing, poker and bingo.

“We are preparing everything so that on June 28 the technical control structure is operating,” Adolfo Mesquita Nunes said in a press conference. “We want to sign up as many operators as possible, particularly international operators.”