The European Commission has approved plans from Poland to amend the current gambling laws, which will include lifting requirements for international operators to establish a subsidiary that is local. The amendments were designed to accomplish two goals: to resolve EC criticisms that gambling laws countered EU edicts on the movement of goods and services between member states, and to lift requirements for operators to have a permanent establishment in Poland.
After opening the market to international firms offering sports betting back in 2011, Poland has just issued four licenses to date. These were issued to Milenium, STS, Totolek and Fortuna Entertainment.
International operators are definitely interested in the Polish market as international sites targeting bettors from Poland rose from 86 in 2012 to almost double that amount last year. By not offering international operators the chance to service bettors in Poland, the country was missing out on hundreds of millions of zloty in tax revenues that could have been collected annually.
The proposed amendments were seen by many as the first serious move by the Polish Government since a 2009 ban. Enforcing the ban, the government first went after operators and a few were scared away – then in November of 2014 they announced they had a list of over 20,000 citizens who had been placing bets at unlicensed companies. The EC approval seems to point the way to normalized, regulated, and safe betting for Polish citizens, and may quell complaints from Polish bookies.