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Colombia – Colombian gambling continues strong comeback after Covid slump

By - 27 April 2022

The President of the Colombian gambling control board (Coljuegos) César Augusto Valencia Galiano, announced that during the first quarter of 2022 the board registered record revenues in gambling licensing fees.  

As of March, he said that the government had collected around COP$170,062m – an increase of 17 per cent compared to the same period the previous year.  Of this total, “Juegos Localizados” which include bingos, slot parlours and  casinos  had contributed COP$71,525m, online gambling COP$50,045m, the Baloto Revancha lottery COP$17,703m and the Super Astro lottery game COP$29,707m.

“Juegos Localizados” reported sales of COP$8.7bn for the first quarter of 2022, and online gambling reported sales  of COP$5.4bn. The Super Astro lottery game registered accumulated sales in the first quarter of 2022 of COP$152,973m while the sales for Baloto Revancha stood at COP$52,657m in the same period. Transfers to the health service from gambling totalled COP$266,990m  – a record figure for this first quarter, reflecting an increase of 242 per cent compared to the same period of the previous year and four per cent more of what was budgeted for that period.

In the case of games such as lotteries, Chance and Raspa y Listo (instants), sales in the first quarter of 2022 reached $794,790m – a growth of 22.6 per cent, compared to the same period the previous year. Raspa y Listo went on the market in November 2021 and the product  has exceeded sales projections by as much as 193 per cent.

Valencia Galiano said that Coljuegos would continue to allow for the diversification of the gaming industry, and  crackdown on the illegal gambling sector via partnerships with local governments.

Highlighting the importance of the industry and the income it generates for the Colombia Health Service he said: “We extend an invitation to all Colombians to opt for games of luck and chance as a legal and responsible entertainment activity, choosing any of the establishments and Internet portals authorized by Coljuegos, because each resource generated from this industry contributes to the financing the health of Colombians.”

Illegal gambling is one of the major issues facing the industry.  In April Valencia Galiano told press that the illegal gambling sector made up 30 per cent of the total gambling in Colombia. Valencia Galiano made the statement as he signed a pact for the Legality of the Gambling Sector with the department of Quindío – a strategy with which Coljuegos aims to combat illegal gaming. Coljuegos has signed a number of similar pacts with local governments since 2017.

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