Schleswig-Holstein has taken a step towards opening up the legal online gaming market in Germany by authorising casino games, poker and sports betting. By doing so Schleswig-Holstein has become the first region among the 16 German federal states to authorise casino games as well as online poker.
In fact sports betting and lottery games are permitted in the whole country but Schleswig-Holstein also offers casino games and online poker. So movement towards the legalisation of online gaming in Germany is making headway even though Germany is not yet at the level of Great Britain, Malta, France or Italy. In fact before Germany issues a definite ruling on legal gaming it will take many more months of negotiations in order to see the final German position.
German Legal operators highly taxed
Operators wishing to legally offer slot machines, baccarat, roulette and blackjack tables and sports betting and poker have to pay high taxes which can be up to 5% of the amounts bet. Several operators are interested in entering this market even though only players from the region in question can enter it and gamble legally. As for the germans resident in the other 15 regions, they cannot in theory access it unless they do through a VPN which is now a part of the everyday life of internet users.The online poker room Pokerstars has shown interest in making online poker tables and tournaments available to players. Also Mybet Casino, whose parent company is the operator of Kiel JAXX SE could also be a major player in casino gaming in Germany by entering through Schleswig-Holstein and waiting until the other regions follow suit. On the other hand in the area of sports betting, Mybet is already very popular in Germany as are Bwin and Betclic.Although progress has been made as regards the legalisation of online gaming nothing has been decided yet since elections are on the way and if there is a change of government everything could change in the region of Schleswig-Holstein.