Bulgarian Parliament Proposes Ban on Gambling Advertisements

Politics | April 24, 2024, Wednesday // 14:51
Bulgaria: Bulgarian Parliament Proposes Ban on Gambling Advertisements

In a last-minute move, GERB and DPS have put forward amendments to the Law on Gambling aimed at prohibiting the mass advertising of gambling, including on television, radio, and news websites.

Introduced by Temenuzhkka Petkova (GERB) and Yordan Tsonev (DPS), the draft amendments seek to curb the pervasive advertising of gambling services, which has been a longstanding concern in Bulgaria.

The proposed changes would ban gambling advertisements on television, radio, public spaces, and electronic media, including websites. Advertising would only be permitted on billboards located at least 100 meters away from educational institutions and on the facades of gambling establishments themselves.

Fines for violating the proposed regulations could reach up to BGN 50,000, signaling the seriousness with which the legislators view the issue.

The initiative is not unprecedented, as similar attempts to restrict gambling advertisements have been made in the past. However, previous efforts have faced pushback, particularly from stakeholders in the sports industry who rely on gambling sponsorships for financial support.

The draft amendments also include provisions to increase the minimum paid-in capital requirement for operating slot machine games and casinos. Additionally, they restrict the availability of slot machines and casinos in small settlements, except for resort areas and locations near border crossings.

Overall, the proposed changes aim to address concerns about the negative impact of excessive gambling advertising and its potential contribution to social issues such as addiction and crime.

While the fate of the amendments remains uncertain, their introduction highlights the ongoing debate surrounding gambling regulations in Bulgaria and the efforts by policymakers to address related challenges.

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Tags: Bulgaria, gambling, advertising, regulations

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