Veikkaus: Finland’s gambling reform must place channeling as the ‘essential protection’

Veikkaus Oy cites that Finland’s gambling overhaul must emphasise customer channelling and the reduction of harms.

Finland’s state-owned gambling monopoly has issued its response to the Ministry of the Interior’s announcement regarding the submission of the draft proposal for a new Gambling Act.

The framework of Finland’s new Gambling Act is based on recommendations put forward to Parliament, with the primary objective of launching a new licensing system to liberalise Finland’s online gambling marketplace.

The mandate aims to launch the licensing system by 2027. Under this system, Veikkaus Oy will not participate in Finland’s new online gambling market. However, the state monopoly will retain its exclusive privilege to operate lotteries, racing pools, totalisator bets, physical slot machines, and arcade games.

The draft proposals have proceeded to the ‘consultation phase’, which is open until 18 August. Veikkaus Oy has urged ministers to prioritise market channelling as the essential mechanism needed to protect national consumers from harm.

SBC News Veikkaus: Finland’s gambling reform must place channeling as the ‘essential protection’
Velipekka Nummikoski: Veikkaus

Welcoming the launch of the consultation, Veikkaus Oy VP Velipekka Nummikoski commented: “The Ministry of the Interior has today announced a draft for a new gambling system. We will familiarise ourselves with the draft and give our own statement by the deadline.

In particular, we will pay attention to the conditions to ensure they enable a licensing system that channels gambling well and, at the same time, effectively prevents harms.”

Veikkaus had previously detailed its support for an overhaul of Finland’s gambling framework, ending its monopoly status over online gambling activities.

The monopoly admitted that under the existing framework, it could not match Finnish online gambling’s exposure to the black market, with national consumers wagering a minimum of €500m a year with unlicensed operators.

Further proposals call for the Finnish government to establish a new supervisory authority, replacing the National Police Board as the supervisor of gambling activities.

The government is recommended to develop an IT network to protect consumers from black market exposures, including the IP blocking of unlicensed websites and imposing payment blocks.

Gambling harm initiatives will see Finland launch a new centralised player registry, which will serve as a database for customer self-exclusion.

The Ministry of Social Affairs and Health will conduct research related to social harms and well-being, coordinating reports with the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare.

Veikkaus concluded that it will monitor proceedings closely in relation to consumer protections, marketing, and the modernisation of Finnish gambling.

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