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Ireland – Three quarters of public against outright ban of betting in Ireland

By - 23 November 2023

Three quarters of the Irish public are against the outright ban of betting in Ireland. Research comes as the Government’s Gambling Regulation Bill 2022 enters the final stage of the legislative process.

The research conducted by Ireland Thinks on behalf of Lottoland, a leading online lotto betting operator licensed in the Republic of Ireland, shows that while three quarters (74 per cent) of those surveyed supported the Government’s plans to introduce greater regulation of the gambling sector, (64 per cent) believe people should be free to gamble responsibly.

Of those that currently bet, almost one fifth (19 per cent) would seek alternative methods of gambling in the event that gambling is restricted in Ireland. This mirrors the results found in a recent PWC analysis, which found that the UK, France, Italy, Spain, Denmark, Norway and Sweden have all witnessed growth in the black market, with growth of between 20 per cent to 66 per cent of all bets staked with black market providers.

Lottoland is urging Minister James Browne and the Regulator designate to re-engage with industry experts and listen to their concerns.  It is feared that the new laws suffer from an absence of clear and robust definitions, and if passed, would have a range of unintended consequences stemming from a range of legal issues,

Commenting Vice President of Lottoland, Mike Kirwan said: “We recognise the overarching objectives of the Bill to regulate our sector for the first time and to establish robust regulatory oversight and accountability in the Gambling Regulatory Authority of Ireland (GRAI).

“Lottoland remain firmly committed to the development and adoption of a comprehensive, evidence-based legislative framework for the gambling, betting, and lotteries sector in Ireland.

“But we also believe that what is set in legislation now will be vital to ensuring an effective, agile, and sustainable framework in the longer term – whilst still providing for an enjoyable yet safer gambling experience for all customers.

“The results of this poll demonstrate that the Irish public are in favour of a sensible approach to the regulation of our sector, which sees increased regulation and harm reduction, without coming at the cost of individual’s ability to bet responsibly.

“We therefore urge Minister Browne to re-engage with our sector, to listen to our concerns and to ensure that this piece of legislation contains clear and robust definitions, which works to effectively protect consumers.”

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