Finland proposes ban on slot ads

Finland is proposing new controls on advertising and payments.
Finland is proposing new controls on advertising and payments.

Finland’s government has submitted a bill to amend the Lottery Act to ban gambling ads and to block payments to offshore operators.

Finland.- The government has submitted its proposals for an overhaul of Finland’s Lottery Act to introduce new controls on gambling. The bill proposes a ban on advertising slots and would require players to verify their identity for all gambling products.

Meanwhile, payment blocking measures would be introduced to prevent payments to all gambling operators other than the regulated state monopoly operator Veikkaus. The police would keep a list of blocked gambling companies to which banks and other providers should block payments.

The Finnish Ministry of the Interior said the proposed reforms aim to “reduce the disadvantages of gambling”.

Veikkaus has already introduced mandatory identity verification for its slots. Under the bill, this would be extended by law to cover all types of gambling by 2024. The bill would also prohibit the operator from advertising games deemed especially harmful, including slots.

It will also have to consider the physical locations of slots to ensure they are all placed where they can be visually monitored at all times. Together with machine suppliers, it would have to create a self-monitoring plan to ensure harm prevention.

Betting advertising permitted

The bill would, however, expand permitted marketing in other areas. The marketing of betting games, such as toto, is currently prohibited but would be allowed under the new bill. The government said this would serve to direct players to the regulated market.

All marketing would have to include details on the age limit for games, problem gambling services and players’ right to ban themselves from gambling. The Police Board would be able to issue fines in the event of any breach of the regulations.

This month, Veikkaus has begun introducing a loss limit tool on its slots. Earlier in the year, it announced that it was making its online casino limits permanent.

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