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Gaming Operators Fear Exclusion in EU Bill

29 September 2005

LONDON -- As reported by Reuters: "Domestic gaming operators are fighting to be included in new European legislation that would potentially give them access to a multi-billion-euro market, but they fear heavy lobbying by state lotteries will block them.

"The European services directive, which aims to inject more competition in professions ranging from architects to advertising, is due before an EU parliamentary committee next week.

"Gambling companies say European Union law allows them to trade across borders, but many individual states prevent it, claiming they are protecting their citizens from gambling addiction.

"…But critics, like Adrian Morris, Finance Director of betting operation Stanleybet International, say the same states that talk of protecting their citizens run equally addictive national lotteries.

"…Experts say the services directive has the potential to end years of confusion about whether gambling should take place across borders…"

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