It's been two years since SRIJ, the regulatory authority of Portugal, decided to implement a new licensing system, in order to better regulate gambling inside the country. Despite initial intentions however, almost no foreign operators have decided to apply for a gaming licence.
The main issues remain the excessively high taxes (8/16% on total turnover) and "the special treatment" of SCML, who used to hold the betting monopoly under the previous regime. RGA has criticised the SRIJ and asked for a review of the existing regulatory regime inside Portugal.
Clive Hawkswood, RGA’s Chief Executive recently stated: ‘It is clear from all the evidence that the Portuguese market is not operating in the way that the Government intended. Only six licences have been granted so far, of which just two are for sports betting which compares unfavourably with well-regulated jurisdictions in Europe and cannot be sufficient to channel consumers into the regulated market."
Additionally, there are serious limitations on poker liquidity, while a call for a reform of the current tax structure was once again requested. The SRIJ has not yet decided to respond.