Policy Areas

“The EFTA Court should accept the slot machine monopoly”

Norway has recently responded to the ESA challenge regarding Norway’s gambling restrictions. Here Norway argues that the law on slot machines is legal under EEA law.

30/05/2006 :: The Slot Machine Case has its origin from 2003, when Norway introduced a reform to transfer the operation of slot machines to the public monopoly already regulating other major forms of gambling.

The purpose of the reform was to introduce a new and more responsible framework for the operation of slot machines, in order to drastically reduce the turnover from gambling from such machines, and hence achieve reduced gambling addiction.

In its response to the challenge from ESA, the Norwegian government underlines that the goal of the reform was to gain control over the rapid increase in slot machine gambling, which resulted from the industry’s introduction of new high-tech slot machines. Norway points out that slot machines represent one of the most problematic and addictive forms of gambling.

The Norwegian government rejects i.a. the argument that the relevant Norwegian legislation fails to comply with the requirements of existing EEA law as interpreted by the European Court of Justice. Also, the government shows that the new law is proportionate, non-discriminatory and forms an integrated and coherent part of a restrictive national policy against gambling in general.

Send this article to a friend  
Print version