Sweden is known as one of the most liberal European countries. Democratic laws also apply to the field of gambling. Most types of gambling are legal in the country both in land-based establishments and on specialized Internet resources.
Swedish Gambling Laws The 1994 Lotteries Act – This Act defined lotteries as the drawing of a ticket which is not dependent on whether a stake is paid or not and can include forms of guessing, betting, bingo, slots, roulette games, and dice and card games. Gambling is legal in Sweden. For purchasing lottery tickets, playing slot machines, and gambling online, the min age is 18. You can see many forms of gambling in local bars or on ferries in the form of slot machines, or blackjack. Partner, Nordic Gambling. Maria McDonald is a partner at Nordic Gambling, a legal firm in the Nordics dedicated to gambling related law. Maria is a Swedish lawyer, specialized in legal matters related to gambling, media and sponsorships but she also has extensive experience of working with dispute resolution, IT and data protection.
According to the Swedish Ministry of Health, most adults have tried gambling at least once in their lives. On average, the industry earns over 40 billion kroons annually. There are 4 land-based casinos in Sweden, and slot machines can be found almost everywhere.
Swedish gambling legislation
The legalization of gambling in Sweden took place relatively recently: in 1999. Before that, only lotteries had legal status in the country. At the moment there is no single normative act regulating all gambling in the country. Currently, work is underway to create a law that would affect all areas of gambling in accordance with modern realities and the requirements of the European Union. Lotteries are described in the 1994 law, casino games in 1999 and slot machines in 1995.
The following land-based casinos operate in the country:
- Casino Cosmopol Gothenburg;
- Casino Cosmopol Malmo;
- Casino Cosmopol Stockholm;
- Casino Cosmopol Sundsvall.
In addition, players can play at the Baltic Princess Cruise Ship floating casino. According to Swedish law, slot machines can be located outside the casino. They are installed in public places: supermarkets, at some public transport stops, etc. In accordance with the restrictions prescribed in the 1995 law, slot machines cannot be placed in the immediate vicinity of educational institutions. Swedish law prohibits minors from gambling.
Regulators and licenses
The country has a state monopoly on gambling. Thus, the only licensed operator is Svenska Spel. It is a state-owned company that organizes bingo, poker and lotteries, and its subsidiary Casino Cosmopol AB owns all land-based establishments.
In connection with the operation of the state monopoly, there is no question of the conditions for obtaining a license. Private companies are not allowed to engage in gambling business. The regulator in this area is the Swedish National Association for Gambling (Spelbranschens Riksorganisation). Initially, it was an organization that dealt with the ethical issues of gambling, but later its powers were expanded.
Online gambling in Sweden
Sweden Gambling Laws History
As a member of the European Union, Sweden cannot prevent the distribution of goods or services permitted in the EU. Gamblers have no restrictions on playing on foreign sites. The latter, in turn, constitute serious competition for Swedish resources. Official sites of casinos in Sweden have very serious requirements for players. For example, a user must determine the amount he is willing to spend on games during the week. After this limit expires, access to the casino is blocked.
The most popular gambling resource in the country, however, remains the site of the state operator Svenska Spel. In second place is the international betting service bet365. The ranking of the 3 most popular online casinos in Sweden looks like this:
- Maria Casino;
- Vera John.
The Swedes are most popular with bingo, lotteries, sports betting (football in particular) and horse racing.
Popular slot machines
According to statistics, slot machines in Sweden are popular mainly with older gamblers. According to Maria Casino, the following slots are the most popular among the Swedes:
- Dead or Alive;
- Mega Fortune Dreams;
- Reel Steal;
- Jungle Spirit;
- Wild Turkey.
Swedish gambling software developers
When it comes to Swedish development companies, the first name that comes to mind is of course NetEnt. The world-renowned development team began its activities in 1996 and is now one of the most popular in Europe and beyond. The manufacturer’s portfolio includes over a hundred games. The company is distinguished by a non-standard approach to the choice of subjects. Slots from NetEnt are recognizable and original. Almost every one of them has a themed bonus game. The developer’s most popular games include the following:
- Blood Suckers;
- Crime Scene;
- Dead or Alive;
- Guns N ‘Roses;
The company is currently operating under a Malta license. Its offices are located in many countries of the world, including Canada, Ukraine and others. The manufacturer is one of the world’s leading providers of online casino platforms. The company owns such developments as the NetEnt Live Casino module for playing with live dealers, the NetEnt Touch software package for mobile gadgets, and much more. NetEnt has won several prestigious gambling awards and became the main sports betting operator in the UK in 2016.
Prospects for the development of gambling business in Sweden
Under pressure from the EU, Sweden is actively working to eliminate the state monopoly in gambling. It is expected that in the coming years, foreign operators will be able to license themselves on Swedish territory. In addition, the local operator is expected to be reorganized. Due to the fact that many players prefer foreign resources, it is planned to make local services more competitive. In particular, the Swedish monopoly Svenska Spel plans to pay more attention to the development of the sports betting sector, since at the moment fans of this type of gambling prefer exclusively foreign resources.
Sweden has come a long way to finally legalize gambling. The current legislative framework is imperfect in some aspects. Nevertheless, comfortable and safe conditions in the field of gambling entertainment are created for the players.
Sweden is one of the freest countries in terms of gambling liberties via gambling legislation. However, most Nordic countries allow some form of gambling and between 60-80% of Nordic citizens state that they have engaged in gambling of some kind at least once over the past year. Lotteries are proliferating in Sweden and other Nordic countries, on the same note, Swedish residents can easily access domestic and online gambling offers with ease.
This page is specifically designed to provide information about specific SE gambling laws, Swedish gambling regulators, and available forms of gambling entertainment in Sweden. You will find relevant gambling legislation explained and be given insight into how these laws affect the existing gambling market in Sweden.
Is Gambling legal In Sweden?
Of course. Sweden allows multiple forms of legal gambling from charitable non-profit gambling to state-owned entities which operate domestically, to allowing offshore operators to enter the Swedish gaming market and serve Swedes. According to various Swedish gambling laws, most forms of available gambling is permitted. However, Sweden has recently adopted a law which could change exactly how offshore gambling operators may navigate within the SE market.
Swedish Gambling Laws
The 1994 Lotteries Act – This Act defined lotteries as the drawing of a ticket which is not dependent on whether a stake is paid or not and can include forms of guessing, betting, bingo, slots, roulette games, and dice and card games. Lotteries were restricted to be run by non-profits in Sweden, horse racing associations, or the Swedish Lotto. Under the Act, the Gambling authority is responsible for issuing permits for lotteries, as well as, allowing Svenska Spel the exclusive right to sports betting offers and the ATG the exclusive right to arrange horse race betting.
The 1999 Casinos Act – This Act established the need for a license to operate casino games, meet obligations to curb money laundering and terrorist financing, and provisions to only allow no more than 6 land-based casinos in Sweden. This act created regulations often seen in most countries with physical casinos such as records keeping, oversight entities, age limits, and fee structure.
The 2002 Amendment – This amendment changed provisions within the 1994 Lotteries Act. This amendment allowed non-profits, the Svenska Spel, and ATG to distribute their gaming forms via the internet. Under this amendment, the Gambling Authority regulates specific requirements for online gambling forms such as electronic lotteries, casino gambling, and betting.
Spellag SFS 2018:1138 – A new SE law adopted by the Swedish Government to be enforced January 1st, 2019. This law will strengthen regulations toward unlicensed operators in the Swedish gaming market. This bill will require operators to gain a Swedish license to continue operating or face being shut out of the SE gambling market via payment blocking and written warnings from the Swedish Gambling Authority and Swedish ISPs.
However, the new law also breaks up Sweden’s monopoly by opening doors for offshore sites to legally offer their services in the market and Swedes by obtaining Swedish gaming licenses. Wildhorse resort & casino cineplex. The new SE gaming law will increase consumer protections and tackle rampant issues such as match-fixing while also creating clearer divisions between gambling sectors in Sweden.
Sweden’s Gambling Regulators
All gambling in Sweden is regulated by the Swedish Gambling Authority or locally called Lotteri inspektionen. This Authority organization is responsible for ensuring the legality, compliance, and safety of Swedish gaming within the local market. The Swedish Gambling Authority has strict guidelines to protect consumers, maintain transparency, and reduce harmful effects which may arise from gambling. The Swedish Gambling Authority must also actively reduce illegal gambling operations, provide suggestions to further tighten regulations, and conduct national Swedish lottery operations via empowerment from the Lotteries Act and the Casinos Act.
What Is The Minimum Gambling Age In Sweden?
Sweden has two set minimum ages for gambling. Typical and popular forms of gambling including lotteries, kino better known outside Sweden as keno, bingo, and non-profit table games require patrons to be at least 18 years old. Physical casinos run by Svenska Spel are subjected to a written requirement by the 1999 Casinos Act to only allow casino-style gambling for those 20 and older. Smaller venues such as local bars and ferries hosting gambling must abide by national laws permitting 18 and older patrons to gamble.
Legal Forms of Gambling In Sweden
Sweden permits various forms of legal gambling in the nation from lotteries, scratch cards, bingo, slots (better known as token machines), kino, poker, roulette, blackjack, craps, horse race betting, and sports betting. Varieties of these games can be found on ferries, in bars, and any of Sweden’s four land-based casinos.
Legal Forms of Online Gambling In Sweden
Sweden’s gambling market allows for the access of online entertainment via amendments made in 2002 to the 1994 Lotteries Act. Available forms of online gambling include online slot games, online bingo which caters to women mostly, online poker, kino, and other online casino gambling games.
Advertising In Sweden
Advertising gambling activities, brands, and entertainment are acceptable in Sweden. Most countries restrict the advertisement of gambling online and on their televisions, however, Sweden openly permits such. However, only casinos licensed by the Swedish state are allowed to air advertisements in Sweden and such ads cannot be aimed at or targeting those under the age of 18.
Emphasis On Tighter Regulations
Sweden Gambling Laws
Sweden has placed tighter regulations over online operators via their SE legislation which will be enforced on January 1st, 2019. The new law will strengthen the Gambling Authority and shun platforms in the market actively operating without a Swedish obtained license. The law also enacts a tax on player’s winnings earned from an unlicensed operator to further halt illegal gambling operations.