March 6, 2021

Online gambling houses appeal the decree of advertising the game after hiring a former high-ranking official of Rajoy


The Supreme Court has admitted for processing an appeal from the Spanish Association of Digital Gaming (Adigital), which groups more than 80% of online gambling operators in Spain, against the Royal Decree of Commercial Communications of Gambling Activities approved last November by the Council of Ministers at the proposal of the Ministry of Consumption, which drastically limit ads from game operators and the sports sponsorships of these companies.

The employers' association of the written press appeals the decree of advertising of the betting houses

The employers’ association of the written press appeals the decree of publicity of the betting houses

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According to the Official State Gazette this Tuesday, the appeal was admitted last Thursday by the Third Section of the Contentious-Administrative Chamber of the High Court.

Jdigital, to which bookmakers such as Codere, Sportium, Luckia, Betway or bet 365 belong, hired on the eve of the approval of the decree, which it described as “discriminatory, unfair and disproportionate”, who was successively deputy director and General Director of the Game in the first government of Mariano Rajoy, the State attorney on leave of absence Carlos Hernández Rivera, with a view to preparing the appeal.

The association already warned after approving the rule that it “discriminates” against the so-called public game of State Lotteries and the ONCE, and “may have the opposite effect to what is intended since it involves such a disproportionate restriction of advertising activity of legal operators that is comparable, in practice, to a prohibition of the same “.

This, in the opinion of the employers, “will mean, as has happened in other countries where similar measures were adopted, the foreseeable increase in the activity of unlicensed operators”, with “dire consequences as regards the protection of vulnerable groups “and a” more than likely increase in illegal gambling. ”

Second appeal

This is the second appeal of which there is evidence after admission for processing a few days ago presented by the Association of Information Media (AMI), which brings together the main written press communication media in Spain and to which groups such as Unidad Editorial, Prisa or Godó belong.

The appealed text, which in a first version presented before the pandemic was much less restrictive than in its final wording, was reformulated and toughened after the experience of the temporary ban on game advertising during confinement, by decreeing the prohibition of 90% of betting ads restricting them to the early morning hours, without allowing these companies to advertise in sportswear, although with a series of transitory periods to respect the agreements signed in advance of their approval .

In the case of sports club sponsorships, these must be terminated as of August 30, 2021, in line with the observations made on the text by the Council of State.

The norm, which appeared among the agreements of the coalition government, was, according to the Minister of Consumption, Alberto Garzón, the response to a “social alarm” that was “justified” given the “extraordinary” expansion of betting in recent years especially among young people.

In 2020, the number of people registered in the state registry of people who ask to be banned from playing online broke another record by increasing 12% to more than 56,000 people.

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