Austria’s private poker casinos are encountering uncertain future as the traditional regulation that enabled them to operate in the nation is all about to end in 2020 January.
The gambling law of Austria takes poker to be a game of luck or chance. It keeps it from being a player from playing it in the poker rooms. Even though poker is usually allowed only in the casino, poker clubs which have secured license under the Austrian Trade act have also been allowed to operate till 31st of December, 2019.
Violation of European Laws
There are casinos which have been offered exclusive gambling license and that is going to be valid for fifteen years. This makes it inconvenient for foreign players to get an entry into the market and starting to operate. As per Peter Zanoni, Concord Card Casino’s owners that have 12 functional poker rooms, this is a preferential treatment that is violating the EU laws. He has also claimed that there is a gambling monopoly in Austria at present. This keeps foreign operators from offering their poker services to the players legally.
Universities of Vienna and Munster’s professor of the department of civil procedural law, Dr Thomas Klicka has said that if the European Court of Justice’s official ruling back in 1994 is to be followed, the gambling regime of Austria should see freedom of trade and service, in accordance with commercial law. It is a view that is shared by all the experts of the law. Dr Andreas Schuster has claimed that the gambling policies of Austria are a double standard. According to him, the policies breach the principle of equality.
Fighting to Survive
Zanoni is now taking some steps to ensure that the casinos offering poker can continue to operate in the next year. This is the reason his company has already filed a complaint at the Austrian Constitutional Court. Zanoni is also looking forward to introducing the case to the EU Court of Justice to keep the poker rooms alive.
About 600 people are presently employed at Concord and the company generates about 65,000 stays in a country every year. With the transitional period coming to an end, it seems like numerous jobs in Austria are at risk. Yet, Zanoni has claimed that he is going to keep up with his fight to keep the poker rooms open. He plans on meeting the members of the Austrian Parliament for discussing the problem.
In the meantime, the casinos of Australia have announced that it wanted to get aggressive with the operation of poker at the beginning of 2020. To prepare for this, Niklas Sattler, the poker manager of the company has said that a poker lounge has started operating in the Vienna venue of Casino Austria, already, since October 2019.
Now, it is left to be seen how the private poker casinos are going to operate after this transitional period ends in 2020 and whether Zanoni is successful in his efforts to keep them open.