Italian online gambling licenses to be extended, hopefully!

The draft Italian budged law provides that online gambling and betting licenses will be extended up to the end of 2023 reassuring the operators of the market.

I had discussed in a previous post that a stressful period was approaching for Italian online gambling licensed operators.  Indeed, the licenses of all the operators in the market are expected to expire at the end of 2022.  And it is not currently possible to apply for either an extension of the licenses or for a new license since that would require to launch a tender whose terms have not been defined yet.

In this current scenario, the Government has been acting to find a short-term solution which would imply all the Italian gambling licenses would be extended up to the end of 2023 against the payment of an amount equal to 15% of the one-off fee paid at the time of award of the license in two instalments due by January 15, 2023, and June 1, 2023.

This move by the Government was highly expected since the tender for new licenses was expected to be launched last year and the launch never occurred.  Such a delay will give to the Government some time to also review the terms of the tender.  Indeed, according to the terms of the budget law issued a few years ago, the tender shall provide the award of only 40 licenses with an initial bidding price of € 2.5 million, as opposed to the current roughly 80 operators that paid – depending on the applicable tender – € 350K for a 9-year license.

The above-mentioned solution is only provided by the current draft of the budget law that is a piece of legislation normally approved during the very last days of the year and subject to several reviews.  Therefore, the discussions might evolve, and the outcome might be different.  The good news is though that the budget law does not provide for any increase on the applicable gaming and betting taxes.

On a similar topic, you may find interesting the article “New Italian sports betting rules bring major improvements“.

Photo by Karsten Winegeart on Unsplash

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Giulio Coraggio

I am the location head of the Italian Intellectual Property & Technology department and the global co-head of the IoT and Gaming and Gambling groups at the world-leading law firm DLA Piper. IoT and artificial intelligence influencer and FinTech and blockchain expert, finding solutions to what's next for our client's success.

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