One of the biggest names in the online casino industry already announced they are pulling back from the Australian market. Vera&John casino, with its headquarters in Malta, decided to close doors for Australian players.
Although, no formal statement has been published on the casino website, Vera&John has notified all registered Australian players via email of their business decision which is a direct result of the new and protective amendments to the Australian Interactive Gambling Act 2001.
“We’re always sorry to say goodbye, but the time has come. Due to a business decision, Vera&John will no longer be able to offer its services in your jurisdiction. Your account will officially be closed in one week.
As of today, you will no longer be able to make deposits to your Vera&John account. Any funds which have not already been removed from your account can still be transferred to your preferred payment provider within the next week.”
Alan Tudge, minister of human services, stated: “The government is committed to taking tougher action against illegal offshore wagering providers and this bill does exactly that”. Not a word lied! The new amendments gives powers to the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) to inflict penalties of up to 6.75 million AUD for operators found to be in breach of the new legislation.
It is predicted by many that other European operators who currently offer their services to Australian players will also join the “exodus”. Rumor has it that one of the biggest online poker platforms PokerStars is next to close its doors.
-- -- -- -- -- --
UPDATE (28-4-2017): The Australian government lost no time.. Australian ministers have taken serious steps in the form of 11 new measures (The National Consumer Protection Framework) in order to eliminate online problem gambling. Some of the measures: online gambling operators will no longer be allowed to offer lines of credit to players, links between providers and payday lenders will be forbidden and a national self-exclusion will be implemented. You can read more about the latest developments here.
UPDATE (13-4-2017): Lucky Dino casino is the next operator to close its doors for Australian players. Seems like Australians are meeting the same fate as US players a couple of years ago. Lucky Dino stated:
"Due to legal developments in Australia we are forced to close the market. We will block the registration of player accounts on Monday 17th April 2017. All existing players will be notified about this and they have until the end of April 2017 to withdraw their balances.
We apologize for any inconvenience caused by this."
UPDATE (16-2-2017): Lapalingo.com also announced that they are pulling back from the Australian market. Lapalingo will no longer accept Australian players starting from the 20th of February 2017: "Due to the current legal situation, starting from the 20.02.2017 we cannot accept any players from Australia. All already registered players cannot make a deposit or play with real money. The players who still have credits in the user account will be disbursed or can instruct the withdrawal."
UPDATE (5-1-2017): Next casino to withdraw from Australia is Dunder. The operator published an official statement in regards to their decision to no longer accept players from Australia: "Due to the current legal situation, and the newly implemented gaming laws in Australia we will unfortunately no longer accept players from Australia from January 1. Please discontinue all promotional efforts as soon as possible.
We wish we would have been able to inform you sooner, but the new laws and fines that came with them came very sudden, and we can no longer risk accepting Australian players.
Thank you for your cooperation and understanding!"
UPDATE (2-1-2017): We have been informed by reliable sources that Karamba and Leo Vegas are also preparing an exit from the Australian market. We are currently waiting for an official statement on this matter.
Category: Gambling industry