Source: European Parliament
The online gambling and betting shop sector is experiencing substantial growth right across Europe. Online gambling is becoming a dangerous addiction as there is no longer any need to go to a betting shop in person since there is a proliferation of online services over which there is very little regulation.
Each Member State lays down its own legislation in this area. Furthermore, in some countries the power to do so lies with regional authorities. Member States are not even required to publish official statistics on gambling in their country, and very few do. Similarly, advertising by these betting shops is not subject to a single set of rules across the European Union.
This creates serious problems for European society. Experts in this area are beginning to see an increase in problem gamblers, and also a change in profile: it is no longer men aged 25-40; gamblers are getting younger and there are more women.
(1) Is the Commission considering the possibility of establishing a regulatory framework in this area?
(2) Does the Commission intend to call on countries to legislate in this area and publish their official figures, and to take measures to tackle online gambling addiction?