Lithuania Prohibits the Promotion of All Gambling
A law has been passed in Lithuania that bans all gambling promotion activity of any sort. The amendment that was passed by parliament with 105 votes in favor and 14 members choosing to abstain from casting a vote, will be applied to the current Law on Gambling of the country. With its introduction, the amendment will force all gambling operators into a bleak corner of no advertising at all.
Further to this, gambling trials cannot be conducted by operators, gambling chips cannot be distributed, and gifts, discounts and other promotions are completely illegal.
The amendment to the Law on Gambling was introduced following a large public campaign against gambling operators within Lithuania. These operators were accused of not following in line with the current COVID-19 protocols in place. The new amendment passed by parliament was certainly welcomed by various people, including the Lithuanian Farmers and Greens Union.
“It is a type of activity that costs too much for some people in terms of health and not just money”, said Aurelijus Veryga, one of the campaigners of the union.
The COVID-19 crisis has impacted gambling in many countries around the world. However, according to Virginijus Dauksys, Director of the Gaming Control Authority, the pandemic has worsened the country’s situation with the gambling industry. According to Dauksys, the authority had received multiple complaints about operators not adhering to obligations with regard to coronavirus safety when inviting people to gamble.
Of course, the introduction of the new law drew ire from the operators in question. Speaking on it, a representative of Lithuania’s National Gambling and Gaming Business Association, Mantas Zakarka, said that this ban would have a negative impact. He said it would outrightly prevent new operators from entering into the Lithuanian market, and instead boost shadow businesses as a result.