The European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA) praised in a press release the Irish government’s efforts to introduce changes to the country’s gambling regulatory framework and bring it in line with regulatory regimes in other EU member states.
Support for the New Gambling Bill
Responding to the publishing of the Gambling Regulation Bill by the Irish Parliament today, EGBA hailed the development as a significant milestone on the country’s path to modernizing its gambling regulations.
Commenting on the development, EGBA Secretary General Maarten Haijer congratulated Minister Browne and his team for moving forward with the bill, expressing the support of the association and its members for the Irish government’s “ongoing efforts to establish modern regulations that fit the digital age” and align Ireland with its EU member counterparts.
A central part of the new proposals of the Gambling Regulation Bill takes the creation of a new authority to regulate gambling, and EGBA expressed its hopes that the new regulatory body will have the resources needed and enough powers to tackle unlicensed gambling firms while being open to constructive dialogue with the licensed operators, other gambling regulators and stakeholders to identify and implement best industry practices.
Safer Gambling Key to EGBA Members
Much to EGBA’s contentment, the new bill also seeks to establish a national self-exclusion register, a measure the association has advocated for previously considering it as a safety net against gambling harm.
EGBA used the occasion to reiterate the commitment of its members to promoting safer gambling in Ireland, as well as in the EU, pointing to their investments in a strong culture of safer gambling inside their business and in the way they interact with their customers and the public.
Other proposals of the bill include the creation of a social fund to support education and problem gambling treatment, new rules for gambling advertisements, and a ban on the use of credit cards to fund gambling accounts.
“We look forward to the finalization of the Bill and engaging constructively with Irish policymakers to ensure the outcome is a well-functioning system of regulation that protects the interests of the many Irish citizens who gamble safely and recreationally, sets a high level of protection for consumers and those experiencing gambling-related harm, and provides clarity and long-term predictability for the gambling sector,” Haijer concluded.
According to the Parliamentary process, the first reading of the Gambling Regulation Bill is expected to take place in early 2023, and if approved by Parliament, the bill will become law in late 2023.
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