Antigua Surrends No-win Hand Against WTO Online-gaming Sanctions
December 27, 2007 3:09 PM
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Antigua's bid to get big sanctions against the U.S. for its online gambling ban has for all intents and purposes failed
Last year saw the U.S.
ban online gambling in its many sordid and popular forms
. Casinos and private firms felt the pinch as the feds started 2007 off with a
campaign of arrests
that threatened to completely destroy the online gambling industry as it exists in the U.S. Most recently, the US government scored a
jackpot settlement of millions of dollars from Google, Yahoo, and Microsoft
, who admitted to aiding and abetting online gambling in the past.
Now the U.S.'s gambling-critical government has
, as it escaped any serious international sanctions from the World Trade Organization (WTO). The WTO, which polices trade worldwide, investigated Antigua's accusations that the U.S. was holding domestic online gambling providers to a different and unfair standard from foreign gambling providers since casinos are legally owned and operated in parts of North America.
The small island nation of Antigua invested heavily in online gambling and was rocked by the U.S.-lead WTO decision last year to curb and eventually ban it. Antigua sought $3.4B USD in WTO sanctions against the U.S.
In the end, the U.S. got off with nothing more than a slap on the wrist. The WTO announced a ruling of a paltry $21 million USD in sanctions against the United States. The U.S.'s Trade Representative stated publicly that Antigua deserved more than $500,000, but also stated, "We're pleased that the figure arrived at is over 100 times lower" than Antigua had sought.
Banning online gambling outright is illegal under the current WTO-enforced international treaty. In the coming months the WTO will hear committees to rework the WTO main agreement to allow such bans.
Sources close to the case speculate Antigua may try to fight back by allowing copyright-lax server farms; a move similar to the
recent Chinese ban on U.S. movie imports
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12/28/2007 2:11:18 PM
I think you've been reading or watching way too much Glen Beck. He talks about the "Amero" all the time. Don't get me wrong, I like him, and I am of conservative nature.
But the "Amero" isn't going to happen, nor is the combining of US & Mexican, or US & Canadian currencies. The only way that would happen is if we decide to roll over in our sleep one night, make one of them the 51st state, and take control of their oil. But then again - taking the oil would be a boost to the economy, and cause deflation.
"Paying an extra $500 for a computer in this environment -- same piece of hardware -- paying $500 more to get a logo on it? I think that's a more challenging proposition for the average person than it used to be." -- Steve Ballmer
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