ARJEL calls for changes

French regulator says legislative model is unsuitable for future challenges


The legislative agenda that ARJEL operates under is “not suited” to the rate of development in the gaming industry, according to the French gambling regulator’s European and international affairs officer, Claire Pinson.

ARJEL revealed in its newly published annual report for 2017-18 that key metrics for sports betting, racing betting and poker all increased for the first time since 2010, with president Charles Coppolani (pictured) hailing a “significant improvement… after some difficult years”.

However, Coppolani added that the May 2010 regulations that underpinned the establishment of ARJEL did not give the regulator sufficient capabilities for the challenges that lie ahead.

“A major reform is needed,” Coppolani said, before citing the publication in December 2017 by the National Assembly’s public policy evaluation committee that recommended the creation of a single regulatory authority. “Not only do I fully support these recommendations, but I call attention to the urgency to implement them.”

Pinson added to that if “the regulatory authority’s competence scope extends” to other areas, such as some products offered by Française des Jeux or Pari Mutuel Urbain, then “additional but limited resources, using the synergies thereby created, would be needed”.

No figure was placed on the resources, which would come directly from the state budget.

However, Pinson said that the regulator is restricted in its ability to react quickly to market developments.

“ARJEL takes action in a very precise legislative framework and the legislative agenda is not suited to frequent adaptations of the legislation,” Pinson said.

“Games, as well as marketing practices of the operators, evolve very swiftly. It is therefore essential for the regulator to be able to adapt its policy regarding problem gambling prevention.”