Finland Gets New Gambling Regulator Amid Industry Shake-Up

The government of Finland has announced the establishment of a new gambling regulator as it moves forward with plans to implement a multi-licensing system by early 2027.

On July 3, the Finnish government released details of the new multi-licensing structure via a public consultation.

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The government will set up a new Supervisory Agency under the Ministry of Finance to monitor the gambling market, including licensed and unlicensed operators. According to the Ministry of the Interior, the agency will start accepting license applications from January 2026, ahead of the planned launch of the new gambling regulation in the following year.

Last October, the government unveiled a comprehensive plan to reform Finland's gambling regulations, including iGaming and sports betting. This includes terminating Veikkaus Oy's gambling monopoly in the state. On July 3, the government released details of the new structure via a public consultation, set to conclude on August 18.

While Veikkaus will effectively maintain its monopoly on lottery games and scratch cards, the market will be open to other gambling operators, who can apply for either an exclusive license or a gambling game license.

More Regulations for Reformed Market

iGaming software and content providers would need to obtain a game software license and pay an annual supervision fee to the agency to deliver their products to the jurisdiction.

The reformed structure would also give the Finnish government increased influence over the ownership of Veikkaus Oy, as it could divest part of its stake in the company if such a need arises.

More Regulation News

Under the new gaming regulations, commercial partnerships between gambling operators and social media influencers would be banned. Outdoor marketing for games that pose a high risk of harm would also be prohibited.

Additionally, physical slot machines and casino games, which would remain under Veikkaus Oy's monopoly, would not be allowed to be promoted or marketed in any way.

The consultation states that legal marketing should be moderated and targeted and direct consumers towards licensed gambling options rather than encourage excessive or harmful gambling behavior. Marketing strategies should not also target minors or other vulnerable groups like those with a history of problem gambling.

The Finnish Supervision Agency would be able to impose penalties and administrative fines on individuals and entities involved in illegal gambling. The agency would also have the power to revoke licenses and ban the operation and promotion of gambling games. It can also use network-barring and payment-blocking measures to curb illegal gambling activities in the region.

The proposal is expected to be submitted to the Parliament in the spring session of 2025 for consideration.


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