SBC News Italy braced for a summer of gambling reforms

Italy braced for a summer of gambling reforms

Italian gambling stands on the precipice of sweeping changes as the government advances with its plans of a “comprehensive reorganization of the sector.” 

A pivot in the regulatory landscape of Italian gambling is currently in progress, with all eyes focused on the ongoing amendment of the Delegation Law.  Approved in April, by PM Giorgia Meloni sanctioned changes aim to reshape the structure of the gambling market, presenting potential opportunities and challenges for all stakeholders.

The Treasury is expected to articulate its viewpoint on these amendments imminently, and the law is currently a subject of robust discussion within the Italian Parliament. 

The completion of this parliamentary deliberation, slated for the beginning of July in the Chamber and 7 August in the Senate, has been delayed due to national mourning following the death of former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi.

Once Parliament approves the amendments, it will effectively provide the government with the green light to publicise legislative decrees directly impacting the gaming market. 

Yet, prior to moving forward on the Delegation Law requires a pressing need to secure an agreement with the regional bodies via the unified body of ‘Conferenza Unificata’. The mandate is required as a prerequisite to ensure that revised laws on gambling venues align with regional regulations and harmonised practices across Italy’s 20 autonomous regions.  

Further positives have seen Government representatives introduce a proposal which advocates for a more inclusive financial model. The proposed approach seeks to integrate regions and local authorities into the framework of state tax revenue generation or the awarding of concessions.

It also recommends a portion of the revenues collected from administrative sanctions – which result from local police control operations – be assigned to the municipality involved.

The industry’s response to these impending changes has been largely positive. Guglielmo Angelozzi, the CEO of Lottomatica, commented on the progress, stating: “The approach at the moment is very balanced and constructive…The Government and Parliament are doing their part to make the system more functional.”

However, a note of caution was expressed by Astro, the association representing gaming operators. It emphasized the necessity of a stable and predictable regulatory framework for gambling businesses.

Astro’s President, Massimiliano Pucci, expressed concern over decisions made by some regions to relocate gaming points away from sensitive areas, including hospitals, schools, and churches. Such decisions, Pucci warned, could jeopardize investments and increase uncertainty in the sector.

Moving into the summer, the sector is slated for major changes, and the effects of this reorganization will have significant implications for all involved parties.

The success of this overhaul will be contingent on finding a balanced approach that satisfies stakeholders while creating a more functional and efficient gaming industry.

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