Sweden’s Casino Monthly Deposit Limit to Be Removed
Sweden’s government has announced an end to the country’s controversial online gambling restrictions, including the SEK5,000 monthly deposit limit at online casinos.
The restrictions will end as planned on 14 November. However, the government has asked the country’s gambling regulator Spelinspektionen to “evaluate” the measures that were in place as well as to put together new measures to enhance player protection.
Turnover in the gaming market has increased, and online gaming has probably benefited from changed consumption patterns since the reregulation. There is a risk that this has led to a long-term behavioral change with increased gambling. This is a development that should be followed up to see if there is a need for further measures.
The gambling regulator has been given until 15 March 2022 to put together a report assessing the temporary measures, and the remainder of the report must be submitted by 31 October 2023.
The temporary measures were introduced to try to prevent an increase in harmful gambling during the pandemic. In addition to the monthly deposit limit, they also included a SEK100 limit on bonuses. Initially, the restrictions were due to be in place until the end of 2020. This was then extended until June 2021 and then finally until 14 November 2021.
At the time the second extension was announced, Shekarabi spoke about how the pandemic had caused financial worry for many Swedes. Speaking around this time last year, he said that the country needed to act “to reduce the risks for vulnerable consumers,” describing the situation as “very serious.”
However, the restrictions did not have unanimous support, and concerns were raised by numerous parties during a consultation. Even Spelinspektionen said that they would only have a “marginal effect” on player protection measures and argued that they might help the black market. The regulator also called the SEK5,000 deposit limit “relatively high”.