Latvian gaming venues including betting shops and casinos have been allowed to reopen after seven months of closure.
Latvia.- Gaming halls, betting shops and casinos have been allowed to reopen in Latvia after seven months of closure due to Covid-19 countermeasures.
Latvia’s Lotteries and Gambling Supervision Inspectorate said that all gaming venues could now reopen provided they follow rules on social distancing, capacity limits and opening hours. Venues can only open between 6am and 10pm.
Gaming venues in Latvia had been closed since November 9 as part of the country’s second Covid-19 lockdown. They were previously forced to close between April 6 and June 9.
During the first period of lockdown, Latvia also banned all online gambling due to concerns about problem gambling during the pandemic.
Earlier this year Riga City Council revoked the licences of six gaming halls for breach of urban planning rules. The venues were all located in residential areas or near Riga’s historic centre protection zone.
Casino reopenings in Europe
Casinos and other gaming venues have now reopened in many countries in Europe. Land-based casinos along with bingo halls and adult gaming centres reopened in England, Scotland and Wales on Monday (May 17).
Casinos have also reopened in France, Germany, Denmark, Cyprus and Spain.
The European Casino Association (ECA) has called for support for the land-based casino sector after figures show that its 900 member casinos in Europe have seen staff numbers fall from more than 70,000 in early 2020 to around 50,000.