Certainly you are well aware that the U.K. is on what looks to be a fast track for exiting the E.U. However, what you may not yet realize is that this move by the U.K. has triggered quite a bit of angst in the tiny British territory known as Gibraltar.
Recall that Gibraltar is located at the southern tip of Spain. As you probably know, Gibraltar is now home to some well known online gambling site operators. For quite some time, Gibraltar has been attracting these online casino operators due to its low tax base as well as the close proximity to the European Union.
Keep in mind, that the EU market is upwards of some 500 million people. Furthermore, the hard to overlook reality today is that supporting these online gambling site operators accounts for a significantly high 25 percent of the local Gibraltar economy. Furthermore, that translates into some 3,000 jobs.
The looming question that has yet to be answered with the Brexit negotiations is what this will mean for Gibraltar. As in, will the exit of the U.K. from the EU mean an automatic exit from the EU for Gibraltar? And if so, will the online casino operators based in Gibraltar suddenly lose access to the EU online gambling market as a result?
As of this writing, none of these online casino operators have indicated they intend to exit Gibraltar. At the same time, this uncertainty is naturally increasing the appeal of other sites that support online gambling operators such as Malta.
To get a sense of the viewpoint from the online casino operators, it is insightful to look at comments from senior executives at 888, one of the largest online gambling site operators. These executives pointed out to a worst case scenario in which the online casino operators could suddenly become ineligible for online gambling site regulatory licenses in some EU countries.
Other online casino operators such as William Hill and Ladbrokes will only report that they are monitoring the negotiations closely. It turns out that the fate of Gibraltar could in fact be up to Spain. In other words, will Spain choose to hinder cross border dealings once the U.K. has fully exited the EU or not?
You can understand that there is a lot at stake for a number of interested parties with the Brexit negotiations. Will this simply drive online casino operators to other locations? Or will the negotiations with the EU come to more favorable terms for both sides? All this, when the interest in online casinos is increasing all over the world.