WOGLR: “German state plans to pull out of interstate gambling treaty”
Published by WorldOnlineGamblingLawReport
The German State of Schleswig-Holstein called this month for the cancellation of a German interstate gambling treaty – the Interstate Treaty on Lotteries (ITL) – that outlaws online gambling in all of Germany’s 16 states.
The local ruling coalition, consisting of Angela Merkel’s Christian-Democratic Party (CDU) and the Liberal Party (FDP), has agreed Schleswig-Holstein should withdraw from the treaty and called on other states to follow. “Even if other states won’t follow, Schleswig-Holstein will legalise sports betting”, said Wulf Hambach, Partner at Hambach & Hambach. “The [SchleswigHolstein’s ruling coalition] has to come up with a convincing concept now. I think it is likely that a legislation model will be presented to the public and we will see legalisation before 2012.” Last year, the European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA) heavily criticised Germany and called on the European Commission (EC) to take action against the covenant. Sigrid Ligné, Secretary General of the EGBA, said: “The German Treaty is incompatible with EU law, and its adoption left us with no other choice but to make a formal complaint to the EC”. Schleswig-Ho01lstein’s Parliament voted in November 2006 to postpone the decision on the treaty, which was scheduled to be ratified a month later. The State Parliament raised concerns that the draft violated anti-trust and constitutional law. Nevertheless, the state ratified the treaty a year later and the ITL came into force in January 2008.
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