French Council of State Receives Complaint from EGBA

Clarification sought for the French sports ownership right

The Council of State in France has received a complaint from the European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA) based in Brussels, which has required a clarification of the nation's sports ownership right.

The organization includes a majority of Europe's tier-one online gambling companies, and it opines that the contentious ownership right demands from bookmakers to obtain permission from and pay fees to the country's various sporting organizations in order to take wagers on fixtures with these charges used for the detection and prevention of fraud.

According to EGBA, even though this issue was initially justified ethically, it has evolved towards generating profits. Sigrid Ligne, Secretary General for the EGBA said: 'The ownership rights have been diverted from their initial objective. Today, licensed operators are facing two contradictory objectives. This incoherence explains the difficulties in implementation and raises numerous legal questions. The issue must be addressed.'

In addition, EGBA stated that the European Commission has not had a chance to formally review the compatibility of France's laws with European rules, since the institution was never notified as directive 98/34/CE proscribes.

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