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In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, Sweden’s government proposed a set of temporary rules that will restrict gambling activities. Social security minister Ardalan Shekarabi proposed to limit the exposure of online gambling, stating that online casinos are “one of the most risky forms of gambling”, especially since many sporting events and other gambling-related activities have been shut down.

Restrictions include a limit to a weekly gambling deposit, with a maximum of SEK 5,000 ($500). The same sum is also the loss limit when using vending machines. Players will also have to set time limits on their online casino activities. Additionally, there will be a SEK 100 cap on bonus offers.

The Spelinspektionen gambling regulator will also have new assignments, such as providing the government on monthly reports relayed to the market or suggesting measures to strengthen consumer protection. Spelinspektionen general director Camilla Rosenberg stated the organization now has “an even clearer focus on gaming responsibility and the fight against illegal gambling.”

Svenska Spel’s president and CEO Patrik Hofbauer expressed a different opinion, saying “It is difficult to interpret the proposals as anything other than a substantial underestimation of the gaming industry’s ability to present powerful measures themselves. At the same time, we are surprised at what we think is missing about consumer protection.”

The proposal will be up for discussion until May 7, but the minister hopes it’ll go into effect on June 1 and last until the end of 2020.


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