France Pushes Hard for Online Poker Liquidity – PokerTube

05 Dec

Four European countries – France, Spain, Portugal and Italy – signed a liquidity deal in July, agreeing to share their player pools. Six months later it seems some of those countries are more ready to implement the deal than others: while Portugal made room for the new gambling laws in their proposed state budget for 2018, France contacted Italy about delays on the Italian side

The watershed agreement was signed on July 6th after years of discussion. The four segregated markets are now set to open their borders to players from each other’s countries, which can be very beneficial to both the poker rooms and the players, as it could significantly increase the action at the tables.

The main facilitator of the deal was France from the start: their Senate approving an amendment allowing for the deal back in May 2016 was what set things in motion. Also, their gaming regulatory body ARJEL played a key role in shaping the deal.

ARJEL recently stepped in once again to move things forward. The gaming agency’s president, Charles Coppolani sent an official memo to their Italian counterpart, ADM inquiring about the delay on their part and a possible launch date. Casino News Daily speculates that the Italians are lagging behind because they haven’t started the bidding process for the new and renewed gambling licenses yet. Some worry that the amendments necessary for the liquidity deal haven’t been passed yet either. ADM has not made any public statement on the issue to date.

At this point the most likely scenario is a partial launch in early 2018 with France and Spain, while Portugal and Italy joining later. Stars Group CFO Brian Kyle also alluded to this earlier this year in his Q3 earnings call.

Meanwhile, Portugal proposed many amendments that

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