Norway Online Casino Guide

Gambling Industry Overview in Norway

The following approaches will be presented

  • Gambling legislation in Norway
  • Gambling authorities in Norway
  • Online casinos in Norway
  • and more

Most types of gambling are currently illegal on the territory of Norway. There are basically two companies, which have a governmental permission to offer gambling services to the country’s citizens – Norsk Rikstoto and Norsk Tipping.

Except for the games and activities offered by these two companies, all other forms of gambling, including online gaming operations, are illegal in Norway. Organizing gambling parties at private homes are also not permitted, as long as the parties are not arranged as a business.

Flag of NorwayDespite the gambling regime in Norway, which has been often described as a state monopoly over gaming activities, the country has been home to some of the best poker players in the world over the last few years.

Overview

Gambling was not Over the past century, most forms of gambling have been considered out of law in Norway.

Currently, all forms of gambling and lottery activities are subjected to the regulation and monitoring of the Norwegian Gaming Authority, which is a public authority working control of the Ministry of Culture of the country. The organization supervises and regulates all kinds of gambling that are legally present in Norway up to date, including lotteries, slot machines, horse race betting and sports betting, raffles, bingo and lotteries, and online gambling.

Gambling Legislation in NorwayThe Gaming Authority is subjected to some rules and goals. It aims to make sure that the gaming activities offered on the territory of the country are organized in a satisfactory manner under public control. The

Gaming Authority also works in order to prevent certain negative consequences of gambling activities over more susceptible citizens who are prone to develop gambling additions. It is also responsible for monitoring the monetary issues and make sure that the profits generated from such activities can be distributed to a range of charitable causes.

As mentioned above, the Norwegian Government has imposed kind of a monopoly over the gambling business in the country, by allowing only two companies to provide gaming services.

Norsk Rikstoto

The Norsk Risktoto is a organization that is entitled by the country’s Government to monitor and regulate parimutuel betting related to animal racing in Norway. The company was established in September 1982 with the initial goal of running a totalizator game. Most games of such types were administered by Norsk Tipping until 1993 – the year when Norsk Rikstoto adopted these functions.

Three years later, the organization was officially entitled with both purely administrative and financial responsibilities for offering such games by the Totalisator Act of 1927. Up to date, the company offers both land-based and web-based operations and is the only officially legal entity that accepts horse race wagers over the Internet on the territory of the country.

Norsk Tipping

Norsk Tipping is the national lottery of the country. The company is a wholly state-owned company, which is put under the control of the Ministry of Culture and Church affairs. It was established in 1948 and currently offers not only lottery games, but also sports betting, Keno and others.

Norsk Tipping was given the monopoly control over the Norway’s lottery and sports betting operations by the Gaming Act of 1992. Later, the company was also granted the exclusive right to host online poker websites for the country’s residents.

Relevant Legislation in Norway

The Norwegian Government has always tightly monitored the games and lotteries provided to the local citizens. That is why the country’s legislation is characterized with some provisions concerning gambling operations on the territory of Norway.

The Norwegian Penal Code of 1902 states in its §§ 298 and 299 that the country considers as legal only games of chance, which have been granted with a special license. According to the Penal Code, such license is given only by the authorities that are entitled with the corresponding legal statute. Gaming operators that are not approved by the regulatory authorities are criminalized by law.

Of course, despite the overall prohibition of gambling activities on the territory of Norway, there have been some statutory exceptions from the status quo.

Later in the 20th century, three legal acts were introduced by the country. These acts offered some exceptions from the strict ban that had been imposed on the Norwegian gambling market. The new additions to the legislation of the country were: the Totalisator Act of 1927, the Gaming Act of 1992 and the Lottery Act of 1995.

The basis for providing the rights to offer horse-race betting activities to Norsk Riksoto Foundation was established by the Totalisator Act of 1927. Then, the exclusive rights to operate some Lotto and football betting, was granted to the state-owned operator Norsk Tipping with the Gaming Act of 1992.

Three years later the Norwegian Lottery Act was issued. It is considered as more exhaustive due to the fact it provided definition of all forms of lotteries and other games.

These three acts are considered as part of the country’s strategy of establishing a state monopoly in the gambling industry.

Online Gambling

Internet Gambling in NorwayWhen it comes to online gambling in Norway, the situation appears to be much worse on paper than it is in reality. As already mentioned above, the country currently has some of the toughest anti-gambling laws in Europe. Additional difficulties originate from the fact that the country is not part of the European Union, which is why it can not be pressed in any way to liberalize the system.

According to Norway’s current gambling legislation, it has been illegal for individuals to bet at foreign gambling websites. This raised a great deal of concern not only among the local players, but also among foreign providers of online gambling operations.

Since 2013, certain processes of market’s liberalization have been on the agenda in Norway. The country has become more concentrated on opening up the market to allow foreign operators in.

Last year the country’s Minister of Culture has announced the intentions of the Government to open up the Norwegian gambling market, as the local regulators set a goal of liberalizing the online gambling sector. The Government realized the necessity of changing its priorities related its policy concerning the gaming and gambling operations in the country.

A study was carried out, but instead of encouraging the competent Norwegian authorities to proceed with their plans and lift the current ban, it concluded that Norway should stay primarily focused on consolidating the current gambling monopoly and cutting off the possibilities for further development of grey markets.

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