Norway to get gambling laws unified

1 Jul 2020

norway flagThe Norwegian Ministry of Culture is considering unifying the country's gambling laws under a new piece of legislation. This means that the Lottery Act, along with the Gambling Act and Totalisator Act would all be under the same framework, applying nationwide.

What this proposed bill targets is to secure responsible gaming and prevent problematic gambling and other negative consequences it might have, according to Abid Raja, Norway's Minister of Culture and Gender Equality.

The consultation will run until September 29th 2020. This bill shall allow the monopolised services of Norsk Tipping and Norsk Rikstoto to continue, while the state will have more control over them, even to the point of appointing their board members. The horse racing sector would also fall under the Ministry of Culture's supervision.

At the same time, offshore betting companies in Norway will still be banned from offering their services locally; going against the proposal of the Norwegian Industry Association for Online Gaming, which has recently pledged to end the country's monopolised market. However, Tipping and Rikstoto must adhere to new standards in terms of marketing and players' safety, by avoiding ads that target kids and problematic gamblers and by keeping their 'responsible gambling' standards high. Moreover, Lotteritilsynet, the local regulator, would be given more power to supervise and ensure legal gambling. A specific guidance is for local ISPs to inform players when they are exposed to illegal advertising from international operators.

Notably, this consultation comes in a period when a report is expected around whether a more competitive market could be more effective against problematic gambling in the country.

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