Spain Launches Public Consultation to Inform Ad BansPublished January 6, 2021 by Lee R
The most important protections in Spain will be implemented in 2021.
Spain's Ministry of Consumer Affairs is going to launch a public consultation to consider the key issues embedded in a Royal Decree for the Spanish iGaming market.
Minister for Consumer Affairs Alberto Garzón explained that the decree is committed to setting out standards for action, intervention, control, prevention, awareness raising and treatment to safeguard players, with emphasis on young people.
The new program further seeks to ensure proper player protection data is collected by operators while expanding the range of information shared with customers.
Spain Minister Speaks
Minister Garzón called for unified support to realize these changes as the priority for 2021:
“This comprehensive vision that will allow the process to be completed successfully will require the collaboration of all stakeholders.”
Input for the legislation will be sought from the diverse range of professional stakeholders in Spain's Responsible Gambling Advisory Council of lawmakers, operators, academics and civil servants.
Representatives on Council
Members of the Council range from national lotteries representatives Organización Nacional de Ciegos Españoles (ONCE) and Sociedad Estatal Loterías y Apuestas del Estado (SELAE) to operators and suppliers such as Playtech, Tómbola, Paf and Luckia.
Curbing Advertising Policy
The substantive changes for 2021 are built upon a general policy of curbing the gambling industry--initiated in 2020 with the introduction of stringent new advertising controls including bans on sports sponsorship and limiting of TV and radio ads between 1 and 5 AM.
The controversial bans were opposed by operator advocates within the industry such as Jdigital who questioned evidence supporting the measures and predicted the bans would push players to offshore brands with no protection for players.
The new changes will likely include self-exclusion schemes as well, in a jurisdiction where data shows 670,000 citizens aged between 15 and 64 years old with or at risk of developing gambling problems—and 6.7% of the population had gambled online in the past year, up from 3.5% in the 2017-18 edition of the poll.
Spain has established a fairly progressive and effective precedent so far in maturing its iGaming industry, and equitable new measures to curb sponsorship is something that the EU market still could use on a larger scale.