Many times when you go to a gambling website, you’d think that they have the right to be operating within a specific country. However many of these websites take advantage of weak laws or governments and squeeze through their cracks. This is the case with the Czech Republic. The Czech Ministry of Finance has been having rough times with unregulated gambling casinos. In 2017 they managed to identify all of them and start handing out fines. However, when fines are handed out they are usually given a deadline of 1 month or a bit more. in this case, it has been well over a year and only 10,000 EUR has been collected of the grand total of nearly 18 million EURO fines that the ministry issued.
Should the population be concerned?
The companies with the fines were mostly online unauthorized gambling operators, who more mostly very hard to track down, but still manageable to have a fine on their company’s name. The population is very concerned about this as the governmental body is proving to be incompetent in collecting these fines. The reason, why its so important to collect them is that several economic decisions have been made with these fine revenue in mind, also it would be a very strong message to scammers and unauthorized websites that the Czech Republic is an easy target, should the fines go uncollected.
One of the most questionable decision from the industry was the fact that they only fined their unauthorized operators and didn’t completely ban them from their servers. What this made others do was to ignore the fines completely, because whenever they decide to apply for the license, they will have to pay the fines they have accumulated. The Ministry of Finance has also announced that it lacks tools to track down all of the fined operators, stating that it is very hard to find individuals behind the websites.
What could this mean for the country’s economy?
It is important to state the fact that both last year and this year fines were well above $10 million, coming to a subtotal of about $22 million this year. The government needs to act on gathering all of these fines because starting from last year some decisions have already been made about the destinations these funds will go to. if there is no definitive decision or action for the collection, some parts of the economy may go into chaos as funds are late or non-existent.
The economy is not going to suffer too much, what’s going to lose the most is the country’s profile. Not being able to control unregulated and unauthorized websites within your borders is a very bad message to be sending out to both potential investors and owners of such websites. Hopefully, the ministry will find ways to improve the situation it has put itself in and will save the country’s image by finding ways to collect the fines.