Major changes are underway in Spain as government officials are pressing for an almost total ban on gambling advertising in the country. Alberto Garzón, the consumer protection minister, commented this week that he is pushing for his proposal to start by this October.
As the proposal moves forward, it appears as though it will become law. The European Commission did not object to the plans for the country to restrict advertisements involving gambling. Garzón is pushing for the ban as part of his plans to protect young people and gambling addicts in the country.
The online casino and sports betting market in Spain has grown significantly over the past few years. Gambling websites are now more prevalent than the state-owned lottery. Garzón has plans to reduce the gambling advertisements by 80% and stop celebrity endorsements as well as make changes in other areas.
What Garzón wants to see happen is that the Council of State approves a Royal Decree covering the gambling advertising ban by September. If this happens, he thinks the final approval needed by lawmakers would be completed by October.
If the Decree is approved, the rules regarding gambling advertising would change dramatically. Ads that promote gambling would only be allowed one hour, from 1am to 5am daily. This change affects television, radio and online advertising.
The proposal also looks to ban gambling sponsorships of events, leagues and full sports teams. If the proposal is passed into law, then stadiums would lose gambling branding. League uniforms would also be affected.
On top of that, operators are facing restrictions on the bonus offers they provide. Welcome bonuses would be banned and there would be a limit instituted on bonus offers, a much lower amount than online gambling providers are used to. The limit would be deterred by the gambling regulator of Spain.