Possible Changes in Gaming in Poland

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Possible Changes Ahead for Online Gaming in Poland

July 7, 2010

A new future for online gambling in Poland may be up ahead with the results of the recent election in the country. With soccer fever still at an all time high and online gambling during the FIFA World Cup at a record high for Poland, there are many expectations in the air of the direction that the new Polish government policy will take with regards to online gambling.

Following the tragic death of President Lech Kaczynski in a plane crash, his twin brother, Jaroslaw Kaczynski ran for election, however he was defeated in the recent elections. Jaroslaw Kaczynski spoke to his supporters in Warsaw on Sunday night, following his election defeat. "I congratulate the winner. I congratulate Bronislaw Komorowski. We can surely say that Poland has changed."

Former President Kaczynski spear-headed the then administration's efforts to firewall sites that they felt were offending, as opposed to regulating and taxing foreign-owned casinos. Many people felt that if Jaroslaw Kaczynski were elected after his brother, he would simply continue the policies that his brother began.

Millions of zlotys were spent over the course of the 2010 FIFA World Cup. The estimate figures suggests that a total of 38 million zlotys ($11.23 million) were spent, with the lion share of 30 million zlotys ($8.87 million) being spent on online gambling. The last election polls showed Jaroslaw Kaczynski trailing by 11%.

Komorowski's policies differed from those of the Kaczynski brothers. The parliament/ acting president, Komorowski was the pro-business, former speaker of the Center-Right Civic Platform party. The online gambling industry believes that Komorowski will liberalize the online gambling laws in Poland in an attempt to generate income for the government, ahead of their euro adoption.

Kaczynski's policy on the Internet was no big secret following their leak to the public in February. He had planned to filter the Internet in Poland and this plan was shown to be unconstitutional. Some at the Wall Street Journal referred to his leaked plans as a "public relations disaster."

The Civic Platform party now needs to prove itself in the 2011 parliamentary elections, following the win of Komorowski. After Komorowski heard of his victory on Sunday, he stated that his campaign had been "especially difficult because it took place in the shadow of the tragedy." Analysts are keeping a close eye on the Civic Platform party and are expecting big things from it.

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