I am pleased to announce PokerStars has secured a Malta Remote Gaming License and very soon we will launch www.PokerStars.eu, giving us the ability to provide enhanced service to players in several European markets.
You’ll be hearing more about our plans for Pokerstars.eu in the coming days, but its origins lie in our dedication to serving players’ needs. We expect our Malta license will immediately benefit players who have told us they want to share in the benefits – such as clarity around taxation – that some jurisdictions offer to sites with a license from European Union nations.
As countries around the world awaken to the advantages of online poker regulation, a development that PokerStars has continuously supported, the industry will continue to wind its way through the complex web of rules that address everything from online security to taxation to consumer protection to corporate finance. Sometimes these rules reflect existing regulation in other markets, sometimes they underscore the lack of clear rules elsewhere. That’s why we support a regulated marketplace and seek licenses, which provides clarity to players and operators.
Obtaining an online gaming license is an arduous task. It requires significant resources and a willingness to allow detailed scrutiny of company practices and procedures that examine an applicant’s credentials in important areas like integrity, security and attitudes to responsible gaming. We’re happy to submit to this, though, when there’s a clear benefit to players, the industry or our company. In particular, as far as our players are concerned, we believe that each new license we obtain underscores the reasons why they should feel comfortable playing with us. We don’t know of any company in our industry that has been licensed by as many jurisdictions as PokerStars.
We hope and expect the future will bring more certainty and more uniformity that will help players and companies alike. That’s why we were happy to see the recent reports that France, Italy and Spain are discussing regulatory cooperation and shared liquidity. And that’s why we created a Player Protection Plan and called for Europe-wide adoption of our trust arrangement in France. This Corporate Blog has written before about the importance of trust, outlining how PokerStars protects its players’ funds by keeping them in accounts that are segregated totally from our own operating accounts.
It will be a long and winding road to more unified regulations for poker around the world. Governments and the laws they introduce change all the time, but you can be assured PokerStars works tirelessly to support the regulation of this industry, to ensure our compliance with regulations in every respect and to make sure that new regulations are as advantageous to players as possible. That’s why our players trust us, and that’s why we’ll continue to seek new licenses when and where they become available. We are confident this will continue to optimize our services, help protect the integrity of the game and enhance transparency. We’ll be sure to keep you informed every step of the way.
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Eric Hollreiser is Head of Corporate Communications for PokerStars