AgiproNews’ Italian View: Reality bites as Lega-5Star begins reform of gambling structure

As anticipated Italy’s parliament has approved the mandate of the Lega-5Star ‘Dignity Decree’ which will lead to a blanket ban on betting/gambling advertising, marketing and sponsorship across all verticals.

Approving the mandate, the Italian government stated that it fully supported the stringent directives which seek to reduce social harms created by the Italian gambling sector.

Lega and 5Star officials have celebrated the passing of the Dignity Decree as an early victory for the coalition, signalling its intent to reform Italy.

The blanket ban on advertising is set to come into full effect from 1 January 2019, with the exception of sports clubs and media owners that have been granted a ‘transition period until 30 June 2019’.

Nevertheless, the final mandate sees further restrictions attached to Italian betting advertising with radio and TV gambling adverts forced to promote child protection messages until the end of the transitional period.

Supporting the blanket ban, Lega-5Star will now move to restructure the governance and framework of Italian gambling.

Within six months the Lega-5Star government will start the reorganisation of the gaming sector, in order to tackle problem gambling and illegal gaming, as well as keeping the invariance of tax revenue,” reads the final draft of the decree.

Industry stakeholders were dealt a further surprise as Lega-5Star confirmed the appointment of political novice Benedetto Mineo as new Managing Director of gambling regulatorAgenzia delle Dogane (ADM).

News reports detail that former ADM leader Giovanni Kessler did not curry favour with Lega-5Star leadership, being deemed too close to Italy’s Democratic Government.

Adjusting to new regulatory conditions, Italian betting now awaits Lega-5Star first budget declaration, with industry incumbents expecting further bad news.

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