Finland’s gambling sector has become a model to many countries around the world. After all, the Finnish gambling economy is popular and efficient. It generates at least 3 billion euros annually, with around 10% of it coming from the national lottery.
Regardless of whether it is land-based or online like those you can see at Kasinohai, the Finnish casinos have limited stakes, and part of their revenues go to charities. Hence their gambling sector has more influence than other countries.
Aside from these, what are the other things that make Finland online casinos unique? Read on to know more.
Online and traditional casinos work together
Finland has only a few traditional casinos. They are so few; you’ll never see one in person if you are a tourist. There are only 16 of them, and they are scattered across the country.
Veikkaus, a Finnish online betting agency, coexists with other online casinos. However, these online gambling companies are not based in the country. Instead, they are operating from Malta, providing opportunities to Finnish players to gamble on a Finnish website with Finnish customer service.
While most major online casino operators are based across Europe, Malta remains the favorite as it has relaxed gambling laws. Moreover, the island is home to many Finnish workers, producing Finnish content and marketing Finnish companies to players back in their country.
The Finnish government controls all forms of gambling in the country, which includes land-based and online casinos. Three different entities in Finland control each gaming type:
- Veikkaus O manages the national lottery, instant win games, and sports betting.
- RAY manages traditional or land-based casinos.
- Fintoto Oy manages the horse racing.
Another organization exists, the PAF, responsible for managing the gambling affairs in the Aland Province.
All profits made by gambling in Finland benefit the country’s social projects, arts, sport, science, and education. On the other hand, foreign online gambling operators are prohibited from offering services and products to Finnish gamblers. However, this regulation doesn’t stop the gambling sites from accepting the gamblers.
Moreover, no law keeps gamblers from playing on unlicensed operators. With this being said, gamblers can play at any online casino they want, with the biggest providing Finnish Suomi translated websites.
Hence, the country is trying to restrain illegal gambling. One of the ways to do it is by prohibiting unlicensed gambling sites from marketing their products and services through the media.
This certain development is worth watching. However, until now, it hasn’t affected how Finns can play on unlicensed online casinos.
Watching the future
An essential matter to think about the country’s present online gambling condition is that local gamblers can still access tons of foreign gambling sites operating abroad despite remaining a monopoly. EU competition laws allow such things to happen.
The Finnish government and local online gambling operators must solve this key problem: rebuilding the monopoly to keep the positives like donating to charities and providing a strong license. And they have to do this while staying away from the extremes, such as outright prohibition and total liberalization.
The supporters are positive about the efforts. However, problem gambling is still a serious problem, according to the National Institute of Health and Welfare.
Online casinos and the state can act together to prevent the trend from rising. For instance, Sweden has launched a national register where gamblers can block themselves from playing on gambling sites.
Finland has over 120,000 players that are reported to have a gambling problem. While the recent statistics show that the number of male gamblers is declining, the number of female gamblers is increasing.
Meanwhile, Finland’s culture is established to keep its people from suffering alone. With this being said, the government will probably intercede, helping the problem gamblers.
If the gambling site operators can play their part, the entire gambling industry may become stronger. A whole new model may emerge where online casinos can keep their customers happy while promoting responsible gambling, which is impossible to achieve for Finland.
Considering that other Nordic countries are moving on from the state-led gambling stranglehold, the ongoing monopoly can be classified as immensely outdated. Nevertheless, it is interesting to watch how a possibly deregulated market would collapse the monopoly in Finnish gaming.