International Trade in Gambling Services
The purpose of this work is to assess the current regulation of international trade in gambling services. Departing from different national definitions, “gambling”represents, in this study, all services which involve wagering a stake with monetary value in uncertain events driven (at least partially) by chance, including lotteries, casino and betting transactions.
International trade” of such services implies that the provider, the beneficiary or the service itself must cross a national border. Therefore, notwithstanding a brief evocation of selected national legal frameworks on five continents, this research has striven to focus on international regulations governing – principally or incidentally –provision of such services. In this context, Internet-provided gambling services were granted special attention.
To this purpose, this work has been constructed in an Introduction and two main parts.
The Introduction lays the basic frame by exposing the historical, economic and legal background surrounding games of chance in numerous countries on the five continents, which are essentially divided into “gambling – restrictive” or “gambling – liberal” jurisdictions. It also gives a definition of “gambling” services in this study, and it endeavors to classify such services in different categories (lotteries, betting, casino-type gambling, other types including media gambling and sales promotion services, examined from a “land-based” or “remote” perspective).
The First Part (Global Trade in Gambling Services) is dedicated to international instruments regulating trade in services with a global reach. It is further divided in two main subparts, as unequal in importance as the instruments they analyze. The first relates to the prominent General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS), signed by 153 countries under the auspices of the World Trade Organization. The second, more modest, examines the services liberalization framework established by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) for its 30 member countries.
The Second Part (Regional Trade in Gambling Services) scrutinizes gambling trade with a regional vocation. To this purpose, it analyzes the framework of the most successful preferential trade agreements to date, which have created a closer cooperation with respect to services between regional partners. This part is thus further divided in subparts dedicated to the following integrated trade areas: the European Union (EU), the European Free Trade Agreement (EFTA), the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), the Central American Free Trade
Agreement (DR-CAFTA), the Mercado Comun del Sur (MERCOSUR), and the Association of South East Asian Nations Free Trade Area (ASEAN).
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