Online Poker In Italy

Total wagers in Italy rose 9.5% in the first five months of 2009 to 22 billion, state gambling monopoly Amministrazione Autonoma dei monopoli dei Stato (AAMS) reported. The obvious interest in gambling online in Italy has resulted in the Italian government promoting a direction that will help the remote gambling industry to gain more ground. New laws that will extend licencing agreements for casino poker, betting services and wagering on virtual events are being formulated.

Francesco Rodano, Chief officer of remote gaming at state regulator AAMS, observed that proposed laws will be submitted to the European Commission in the near future in the hopes of having the new laws in place by the end of 2009. Rodano has commented that the Italian government has plans to introduce a new gross profits tax rate of 20% for online poker cash games and casino games. This is an increase on the current 4.5% tax on gross gaming revenues on sports betting.

Rodano explained, “In tournament poker we can therefore take 3% of gross gaming revenues but that would not work in cash games as the operator takes a rake off every pot…We will therefore take the tax off the operators’ rake; this will allow them to set the rake at commercially viable levels.”

Agicoscommesse’s report states that over four million online poker tournaments have taken place on Italian poker sites since October of 2008. Italian poker pro Dario Minieri says: “I think Italy sends one of the largest numbers of players to the European Poker Tour.”

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