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EU Says US Internet Gambling Ban a Violation

Written by:
Guest
Published on:
Jun/10/2009
EU

BRUSSELS -(Dow Jones)- The European Commission Wednesday said that U.S. laws prohibiting gambling over the Internet violate international trade rules and threatened to challenge the ban at the World Trade Organization.

An investigation by the commission, the European Union's executive arm, has found that the U.S. gambling ban is being enforced mainly against non-U.S. companies, a violation of WTO rules.

The commission said that while a WTO case against the U.S. would be justified, it hopes that the two countries can negotiate a solution.

"Internet gambling is a complex and delicate area, and we do not want to dictate how the US should regulate its market," said E.U. Trade Commissioner Catherine Ashton. "However, the US must respect its WTO obligations. I hope that we will be able to reach an amicable solution to this issue."

The E.U. says that the U.S. continues to allow remote betting on horse and greyhound races through U.S. companies, while cracking down on Internet poker gambling companies in the E.U., which are mainly based in the U.K., Ireland, Austria, Malta and Gibraltar.

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