Gambling advertising restrictions are set to be implemented in Portugal following a debate in the country’s Parliament.
The four bills, which were debated at the Assembly of the Republic, state that gambling advertising should be banned from television and radio between 7am and 10:30pm. This would treat gambling similarly to alcohol advertising, which is also banned during these hours in the country.
They also called for an end of instant lottery and scratch card advertising, and was debated by political parties the Left Bloc, PCP and PAN, alongside non-registered deputy Cristina Rodrigues.
Bill 919, which was published in July, was done so in response to the rise in online gambling during the coronavirus pandemic in Portugal, with the country’s online gaming industry seeing an 82% year-on-year rise in revenue for Q2 2021, up to €125m ($145m).
Rodrigues said: "We propose that it is only possible to advertise this type of game after 22:30 and until 07:00, and it’s proposed that, similar to what happens with tobacco packages, the bulletins of these games also have a warning as to the fact that they are liable to create dependency."
Bill 343 calls for advertising limitations while Bill 951 wants to provide warnings about addiction in lottery games during advertisements, and Bill 952 aims to limit gambling advertisement but at the same time, promote responsible gambling. These were approved by the Assembly in early October and will move to the next stage in order to take them a step closer to being passed into law.
Such restrictions in gambling advertisements follows a recent trend in many European markets. Last November, the Spanish Government passed the Royal Decree on Commercial Communications limiting commercial audio-visual advertisements to between 1am and 5am.
The Dutch online market launched on 1 October but prohibits online gambling advertisement from being broadcast on television and radio between 6am and 9pm.
While in August 2019 a voluntary whistle-to-whistle advertising ban was introduced in the UK, prohibiting gambling adverts being shown during live sport – excluding horse and greyhound racing – before the 9pm watershed. These bans last from five minutes before the start of the match, ending five minutes after.
Image source: UnSplash