Yesterday, February 13th, PokerStars launched its new subsidiary online poker site PokerStars.eu. The action came just a few days after the company was granted a gaming license in Malta and should prove to be a huge benefit for players from countries that tax online poker winnings. The local laws have caused big problems for Swedish and Finnish (the new PokerStars.eu platform is the first launched in those two Scandinavian countries) players as their governments apply up to a 50 percent tax on online winnings outside of the European Union.
A lot of PokerStars players from countries that taxed their online winnings (not profit) had big problems with their government’s approach to online poker fundamentals - like winning a tournament is not necessarily profit. PokerStars sought the Maltese gaming license in order to release their users from the heavy burden of unfair taxation. Since Malta is a member of the European Union and does not apply taxes to gambling winnings, PokerStars.eu players will be able to play all of the online poker games tax-free.
However, Sweden and Finland are just pioneers and PokerStars.eu could start accepting players from other European countries in the near future as well. The online gaming license issued by the Lotteries and Gaming Authority of Malta allows PokerStars to provide tax-free gaming services in most of the EU member countries. The Maltese gaming authority has granted a gaming license to many online gaming companies in the past which means PokerStars will now be on the same level as most of the other European online poker providers.
“Some markets treat European Union-licensed operators differently than other license-holders,” said PokerStars Head of Business Development Guy Templer. “Offering our online poker on www.pokerstars.eu with a Maltese license provides benefits to players in Sweden and Finland in particular and we are always striving to offer the best product possible to our players, wherever they are located.”
By joining PokerStars.eu new users will gain access to all cash games, Sit'N'Go and multi table tournaments available on PokerStars.com as well as all of the online poker software features. Swedish and Finnish players can now update their .com software as well as their PokerStars accounts on the .eu site and maintain all of their funds and account details, including VIP status and points.
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