The Swedish Gambling Authority, or Spelinspektionen, is an expert authority that ensures that the ever-evolving online Swedish gambling and gaming market is safe, reliable, and legal.
The Authority monitors the interests of consumers, contributing to mitigating the risks of the potential harm that can be caused by gambling and working towards a safe and healthy gambling market.
The Swedish Gambling Act became effective in January 2019. Under the gambling act, any entity running a gambling operation directing its services toward the Swedish gambling market must have a license. In that regard, the Swedish Gambling Authority, or SGA, is responsible for closely monitoring the Swedish gambling market and issuing permits to operators offering betting services.
The Swedish parliament elected several legislative changes to the Swedish Gambling Act. Various new measures are also yet to be established as part of the legal package.
One significant change introduces a permit requirement for supplying manufacturing, providing, installing, and adapting gambling software. The primary goal of the permit requirement is to safeguard end users from unlicensed gambling. The new condition is expected to become effective on the 1st of July, 2023.
What does the Spelinspektionen Swedish Gambling Authority do?
As mentioned, the Swedish Gambling Authority is tasked with ensuring that casino games, lotteries, and other gambling operations are legally carried out in Sweden. The Authority issues lottery permits while monitoring and supervising Sweden’s gambling and lottery activities.
The Ministry of Finance governs the Spelinspektionen Swedish Gambling Authority, and the Swedish Government appoints its Board. Furthermore, the Director General is a member of the Board and manages the Authority’s regulatory activities.
The Authority is committed to providing consumers with the necessary tools for fair gaming by sustaining a balanced, fair, and transparent gambling market while mitigating the harmful social effects gambling may involve, including underage and problem gambling.
It aims to work towards a safe and sound gambling market while reducing illegal gaming and lottery operations.
Spelinskektionen’s tasks include the following:
- Issuing type approval to lottery tickets and equipment for drawing and surveillance
- Granting permits to gaming machines, national lotteries, restaurant casino operations, and specific bingo permits
- Holding overall responsibility for the supervision and compliance of lottery and gambling activities
- Updating the Swedish Government on Swedish and foreign gambling market developments
- Facilitating training and informative resources on the lottery and gambling legislation
Spelinspektionen recognizes the vitality of identifying and working against terrorist financing and money laundering and offers numerous resources to encourage awareness for operators regarding the subject.
As per Spelinspektionen’s guidance regarding curbing money laundering and terrorist financing, it recommends procedures such as risk assessment, risk-based internal procedures, the risk classification of customers, monitoring and reporting, and CDD (Customer Due Diligence) processes, among other methods.
How the eGambling industry in Sweden and the Nordics has evolved in recent years
For an extended period, Svenska Spel owned the rights to offer services in the licensed iGaming market in Sweden. The company was formed in 1997 following a merger between AB Tipstjänst (formed in 1934) and Svenska Penninglotteriet AB (established in 1897) and conducted business via agents, bars, restaurants, bingo halls, etc.
Despite various attempts to make the gambling market competitive and open in the past, this only became possible after the Swedish Government’s initiative to establish changes that took effect on 1 January 2019. That was when the Authority assumed a holistic approach to gambling, particularly in the Swedish betting market.
Thus, as of said date, the Swedish market is fully regulated, making its present legislation one of the youngest and, in several respects, the most thoroughly constructed legislation among its counterparts. At this point, 94 companies currently have active licenses.
That means the Government handles supply and demand via regulations affecting taxes and oversight, among other things.
In December 2019, the SGA also issued a policy document to counter illegal gaming activities. Since then, the Authority has taken action against thirty-five companies targeting Sweden and filed police reports against the companies at the time. The SGA has revealed a future priority to safeguard the reregulated Swedish gambling market.
How does the Spelinspektionen Swedish Gambling Authority collaborate with other regulators and authorities?
On 4th March 2019, the Swedish Gambling Authority entered into an MoU (Memorandum of Understanding) with the Malta Gaming Authority to facilitate ongoing close communications between both authorities. Another aim behind the agreement was for both Authorities to effectively share information in favor of their responsibilities and roles.
On 11 November 2019, the SGA signed another MoU with the UK Gambling Commission to facilitate closer communication between both parties. Through the agreement, they aimed to promote sharing best practices in areas including regulatory policies and procedures.
The Authority also entered into an MoU with Dutch regulator Kansspelautoriteit on 19 October 2020 to effectively enhance cooperation between both authorities. Under the MoU, both regulators agreed to share information to enforce strict laws against operators operating illegally or breaching licensed conditions.
How to get a gambling license for the Spelinspektionen Swedish Gambling Authority?
Applying for a gambling license from the Swedish Gambling Authority is lengthy. The permit is only issued to applicants with the experience, knowledge, and organization needed to run their planned gambling operation. The applicant will also be required to run the operation in compliance with the law and other regulations.
Any licensee established in a country outside the EEA (European Economic Area) must have a representative physically present in Sweden.
This process, along with other prerequisites, ensures that the issued license is proof of compliance with the regulations established by the Authority and that consumers are treated fairly in terms of fair games and the protection of personal information.
Automated identity verification for the gambling industry
A secure user identity and age verification process can make the iGaming industry a safe place for everyone. While complying with age verification requirements and youth protection policies, you can get your players on board conveniently, as the automated IDV solutions for the gaming industry make this process easy.
Your customers are immediately directed to the automated identification process after sign-up. After successful identification, you may verify the new account on the sport after promptly receiving the customer data.