Friday, July 02, 2004
David, Goliath in Settlement Talks on Internet Gambling
In late March, a World Trade Organization Panel decided an Internet gambling dispute between the US and the twin-island nation of Antigua and Barbuda by backing the islanders; previous related Vice Squad post here. Antigua hosts cyber casinos, while the US tries to prevent at least some forms of Internet gambling. (The legal status of Internet gambling in the US varies state-to-state and is both complicated and unsettled.) That's a restraint upon trade, and the WTO panel thought that the US should have negotiated with Antigua before banning (to the extent that it has) Internet gambling. The US was talking appeal, but this week's news is that the two sides are going to try to come to terms before any further WTO rulings.
Having successfully (so far) taken on the US of A, Antigua and Barbuda is feeling its oats. The next target: looking for some relief from those onerous anti-money laundering controls promulgated by the G-7. Perhaps A&B should mention that the best money laundering intervention would be to abandon the disastrous worldwide drug prohibition.