It has taken years for the new Remote Gaming Act (KOA Act) to finally be approved by the House of Representatives and the Senate. But February 19, 2019 was finally the day. The Senate also agreed.
With this law it is possible for companies to apply for a license to offer online games of chance. Something that has always been illegal in the Netherlands.
KOA law postponed earlier
After the law was approved by the Senate, it was initially thought that it would be feasible to implement the law on January 1, 2021. The entire process of a permit application and its processing may take six months. So for a while it seemed that as of July 1, 2021, the first online casinos with a Dutch license would see the light of day.
But there was still much to be done. So much so that the target date of January 1 was adjusted to March 1, 2021. A two-month delay was not too bad. But now it appears that even that date is not feasible. Once again, an adjustment of the date is imminent. It has not yet been officially communicated by the Gaming Authority and the government but insiders report that the new date will be April 1, 2021.
Postponement was expected
The postponement does not come out of the blue. Minister Sander Dekker announced when the first delay was announced that it was not entirely certain that March 1 would be met. He said at the time:
“The feasibility of this timetable obviously depends on the further course of the process that the lower regulations go through, including the advice of the Council of State on the decision Koa.”
September 1 is still in the picture
Despite the 1-month postponement to April 1 as the date for submitting applications, the September 1 date is still in the picture. Legally, the processing of a license application may take 6 months but faster is not prohibited. So perhaps with some extra effort some companies can already start on September 1. That is not inconceivable.
The companies that have been sanctioned and sentenced to a cooling-off period do not benefit from the postponement. Some companies were reprimanded by the Justice Department for offering games of chance to Dutch players before. They were punished with a time penalty. They are not allowed to apply as early as April 1. No, they must wait a certain period. That period is now also simply postponed.