The Czech Republic will launch a gambling exclusion register in the middle of next year, according to the country’s minister Alena Schillerová.
The key points of the exclusion register
Individuals on this list won’t be allowed to gamble at all, whether that be online or land-based. People who have been declared bankrupt, are on welfare, or have been treated for gambling addiction will all be added. There shall also be an option for players to voluntary exclude themselves, if they want to.
When discussing the proposed introduction, Schillerová said: “We will publish documentation at the turn of this year and begin testing, so that this register is operational in mid-2020.”
Other figures welcomed these changes, including the country’s National Drug Policy Coordinator Jarmila Vedralová. She was worried about young men in particular gambling online. The Czech National Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Addiction recently revealed that over 45% of all gambling deposits are made digitally.
Vedralová said: “Currently, all indicators of online gambling are growing. The proportion of online players is increasing, and sports betting is the biggest problem. Young men are particularly at risk from developing problems.
“This is what our next steps are targeting. It’s not a matter of deleting new technologies from life. Instead, we’re looking to find a balance for their use.”
Limiting the black market
The incoming exclusion register follows on from the 2017 Gambling Act, which legalised iGaming in the Czech Republic for the first time.
The policy has been praised for regulating international operators and reducing the size of the country’s black market. Hundreds of illegal websites have been blocked, while over 600 million Czech Koruna (£20m+) has been handed out in total fines. It has become vital that affiliates within this market know who can and can’t be promoted.
Since the act came into place, it has also been mandatory for all users to verify their age. This has helped to prevent minors from placing bets.
Not long ago, the Czech Ministry of Finance announced tax increases within gambling. From the beginning of next year, lotteries, live casino and bingo operators will be charged 30% instead of the current 23%.
The changes were met with opposition, but the MoF has since defended its actions.