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Czech – Czech to treat gambling as an ‘addictive substance’

By - 17 December 2014

The authorities in the Czech Republic are to treat alcohol and gambling as illegal drugs following amendments in the national strategy in the anti-drug policy.

The strategy has been to replace the word ‘drugs’ with ‘addictive substances and gambling.’
It wants to make accessibility to gambling harder and bring in tougher regulations and measures to lessen both the supply and demand of gambling.

National Anti-Drug Coordinator Jindřich Vobořil said access to gambling was much higher in the Czech Republic compared to other countries.

In 2013 there were 7.5 gambling machines per 1,000 inhabitants in the Czech Republic. In Slovakia that figure was 3.7 in Slovakia. It was three in Germany, 0.6 in Poland and 0.3 in Austria.

Online bets with licensed gambling operators in Czech reached 14bn Kč.

About the same amount is spent on foreign gambling websites.

A report that led to the recommendations stated that 170,000 adults could become problem gamblers.
The effectiveness of the strategy is to be evaluated in March 2019.

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