Italy passes bill to ban gambling advertising
New gambling bill will come into effect early 2019
Italy’s cabinet has passed a bill that will see advertising on gambling banned from the beginning of next year. State-run national lottery and its products are, however, exempt from the ban.
The ban will be applied to all gambling products and services advertised across various media such as the internet, radio and television. The bill also extends to cover advertising from clubs trying to obtain gambling sponsors. Advertisers who already have existing contracts in place will be granted an extended deadline allowing them to see their contract through, thanks to a clause in the bill.
LOGiCO, a trade body in charge of the interests of online operators in the country, said that they were surprised by the new law. “While fully sharing the concerns of the institutions with regard to problem gambling, LOGiCO does not believe that this ban can produce positive effects in terms of player protection or reduce – and certainly not eliminate – the risks derived from an uncontrolled practice of the games themselves,” the body said.
Labour Minister Luigi Di Maio, who passed the law, said that gambling addiction has affected thousands of families and that the government will find the financial cover for the ban from its new national plan on gambling.
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