Thursday, December 23, 2004Contact: Maurits Bruggink
US expected to appeal WTO ruling

US authorities confirmed to IFHA their intention to appeal the WTO panel ruling, which condemned the US for banning foreign online gambling operators, in the first week of January.

The IFHA supports the US position, as it believes in the national integrity over betting policies and rules. The global racing industry calls upon companies in Antigua & Barbuda or anywhere else in the world to stop offering betting services to citizens of countries where they do not have a licence.

In addition, the IFHA is displeased about the fact that many betting operators based in Antigua & Barbuda take bets on races without having the express agreement of the racing authority staging those events or the rights holder of the racing data and pictures.

Sould the US decide to appeal, a so-called “Appellate Body” of 7 distinguished legal experts will deal with the appeal. It may take until early May until we have a final decision in this dispute.

During the appeal procedure, some countries have formal observer status and can make substantive comments on the case. These observers are: Japan, Canada, Chinese Taipei, the European Union and Mexico.

The IFHA would also call upon the observing parties to support the US in its position to keep national integrety over betting regulation.

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