Online Gambling

Online Gambling in Estonia

The state-run sportsbook, called Spordiennustus, offered the first online gambling facilities in Estonia in 2004. Another site, E-Lotto, offers state lottery, bingo, and other number games on the internet. The site does not offer any games of skill. The Olympic Entertainment Group, which operates most of the land-based casinos in Estonia, also runs a website detailing local tournaments and events, but does not offer gambling online.

For casino-style online gambling in Estonia, players must turn to sites hosted in other countries. There are a few international offshore internet gambling sites that offer services in Estonian, but they are rare. Most people looking for Estonian online gambling must turn to sites in English, German, or other major languages. The government is still working on regulation regarding online gambling in Estonia, so the industry might open up during the next year.

Estonia has legalized online gambling in an effort to help raise funds through taxation.

The country is hoping to join the eurozone next year and is desperately searching for alternatives sources of income after suffering one of the worst recessions in the EU.

The decision to legalize online gambling, including poker, comes on the heels of a highly successful poker tournament hosted by the country adn sponsored by, the world's largest online gambling site.

The Estonian Free Press reported that people would be allowed to use Estonia-based online gaming companies through 2010, and that as of 2011 the market would be open to everyone.