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George Nikitiades, 
Deputy Minister, Ministry of Culture & Tourism

George Christodoulakis, 
Secretary of State for Asset Restructuring & Privatizations, Ministry of Finance

Christos Staikouras, 
MP, Standing Committee on Economic Affairs, New Democracy

Jürgen Creutzmann, 
Member of the European Parliament

Konstantinos Maragkakis, 
Head of Communications, StanleyBet

Malcolm Bruce, 
Director of Corporate Responsibility, Betfair

Martin Cruddace, 
Chief Legal & Regulatory Officer,Betfair

Politis Dimitris,
Managing Director & Head of Global Banking, HSBC Greece

Manuel Esparrago,
Brussels Manager, Remote Gambling Association

Andrew Gellatly,
Editorial Director,
Gambling Data

Roberto A. Jacchia, 
Avvocato, Member of the
Italian Bar

Pieter Remmers, 
Director, Assissa Consultancy Europe

Emmanuel Skourtis,
Head of Restructuring

Nikolaos Roumnakis,
Consultant, Law Firm Sinanides and Sinanides

Nikos Serdaris,
OSIPE, Euromat




PANEL I: The new institutional framework for the gaming market in Greece

The law that was passed by the Greek Parliament last August to Regulate Gambling in Greece has established new standards for the Greek market. Our country is attempting to comply with the provisions of the European Union concerning the technical-entertainment games, while simultaneously takes a step to legalise illegal gambling. The Greek Gaming Board (GGB), which acquires more substantial powers, is once again institutionalized under the new framework. The GGB will attempt to control the vast and uncontrolled activities by non-statutory providers, while the banking system and the Internet Service Providers (ISPs) acquire a role in this process. In reality, the Greek State is attempting to regulate an activity where Greek citizens annually according to the Ministry for Finance bet approximately 4 billion Euros on Lady Fortune?. The key issues that are raised for discussion at this session are the extent to which the new regulations, which are introduced by the new law, comply with European Law and how they serve the equitable development of the market forces. Another key issue is the licensing for online gaming providers and the extent to which the government authorities can deal with illegal gambling. Last but not least, executives from both the market and the government will discuss whether the new regulations promote the public and social interest, since a significant part of society is reacting to the governmental choices in relation to gaming.

PANEL II: Opportunities and prospects for the regulated gaming market

The expansion of the gambling market offers new opportunities and challenges to existing and potential newcomer gambling providers (operators). The introduction of the VLTs and the licensing of Internet gambling will decisively reform the map of gambling in our country. New forces are expected to arise while the existing players will at least try to maintain their market share. It is noted that after the new regulations are implemented there will no longer be talk about a legal market of 8 billion Euros, but of a market of 12 or even more billion Euros. Within this context, the heads of the leading forces in the gaming market are invited to take a position as to how they understand the rapid changes being brought about by the market deregulation and to present their business plans and priorities. They will also be asked to take a place in relation to the crisis and how it affects sales, and the investment that they are being invited to make. The transfer of experience from other European Union markets where the market deregulation has already take place (Italy / France) remains a challenge, especially after the highly successful example of Italy. We will furthermore investigate the role of OPAP and the Casinos that currently dominate the traditional (offline) gaming market and how they will react to the impending invasion by the newcomers.  We will finally discuss the potential partnerships and alliances between the market forces in order that they acquire a better position on the new landscape that lies ahead.

PANEL III: The role of privatization in the opening up of the gaming market in Greece

The Greek Government within the context of the Medium Term Financial Strategy Framework (MPDS) has made explicit commitments to lenders to privatize and exploit public property. To this end, the gaming sector in Greece plays a key role as it is at the ?cutting edge? of the specific plan to exploit the public assets. A number of market forces that are led by OPAP, will be invited to support the specific effort, through which the Greek Government expects revenue in excess of 3.0 billion Euros over the two-year period of 2011-2012. A top Government decision is defined by the full privatization of OPAP through the assignment of the 34 % that is currently held by the Greek State. These actions have attracted the attention of both international as well as domestic investment. Banks, investment capital, operators etc, are moving at the pace that is set by the privatization programme of the Greek Government in order to find business opportunities. Government executives and factors from the market and financial system at the specific session will focus on and expand the privatization programme that is of interest to the global gaming industry. They will also examine the budgetary objectives of the government in detail through the upcoming privatisation wave (OPAP, State Lotteries, ODIE, etc).

PANEL VI: Responsible gaming: A prerequisite for the beneficial operation of the gaming market

The participation of population in gaming within reasonable levels in order to avoid wasting money, is one of the new basic principles under the new institutional framework that is being implemented in Greece. Along with preventing the participation of minors in gaming, they are the two main foundations for achieving the responsible gaming that is being sought after by the Greek State. Is the regulatory framework governing the gaming market in Greece in a position to preserve these two foundations and its desired fundamental principle? Can the new player card that is being introduced by the new legislation ensure responsible gaming? These issues are prevalent in the debate to be held at this meeting of the Gaming Money Conference. Market executives together with experts in the fight against addiction and delinquency in gaming, will relate their experience to date from both the Greek and the international market. It will also examine how technology can ensure ?responsible gaming?.

PANEL V: Technology and gaming

In an era when capital and operating investments are shrinking globally, technology as a key factor in cost reduction is becoming the lever for development. Nowadays, technology has created a gaming market (that is operating at a distance-online) in the sum of 4 billion Euros for Greece and approximately 60 billion Euros (2008 data) for the United Europe of the 27 member states. This giant market is expected to further widen, since computers and networks make communication and at home-entertainment easier, thus gaining existing as well as new gaming players. The expansion of mobile networks is considered to be a catalyst in this direction, together with the development of secure payment systems, as well as the so-called "smart" mobile phones (smartphones). The aim at the last meeting of the Gaming Money Conference is to present the development models for the gaming market that will be based upon the new technological and the regulatory conditions that are being imposed by the Greek Government. The future of offline gambling will also be examined as to how it will manage to survive within the new living environment that is dictated by the broadband networks and electronic communications. Another challenge is how technology can restrict the provision of gaming services in Greece exclusively to the legitimate license holders. Market executives will illuminate the "hidden" aspects of online gaming and their role on the revenue of Greeks and Society.









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