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EGBA: concerns over forced limitations

By Violeta Prockyte

The European Betting and Gaming Association (EGBA) supports the Spelinspektionen’s advice against government-imposed mandatory deposit limits. The Swedish gambling regulator is concerned over channelisation.

Sweden’s health minister Ardalan Shekarabi proposed a list of restrictions related to online gambling, including a weekly deposit limit of 5000 SEK (€471). Spelinspektionen warned the restrictions could do more damage than good if players turned to illegal operators where they wouldn’t have the protection and security.

In agreement, EGBA states the new regulations could harm “gambling and tax revenues”. EGBA secretary general Maarten Haijer said EGBA understands the government’s point of view, as it aims to protect citizens during hard times. But she also stressed the regulations could have an opposite effect on the players. “Many Swedes are already gambling on unlicensed websites and these restrictions will make unlicensed websites – which don’t apply any limits – even more attractive to them. We must remember gambling is human behavior, consumers will always make their own choices and top-down regulation rarely works.”

Haijer warned the limits on gambling would end up pushing the players towards the unlicensed sites because while they are less secure, those websites won’t interfere with the player’s experience. EGBA also stated European countries didn’t register an increase in online gambling after lockdown began.

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