Sweden To License B2B Companies, Ban Promotion Of Illegal Gambling

January 27, 2022
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​​​​​​​The Swedish government is planning to license gambling software companies, ban the promotion of illegal gambling and tighten marketing restrictions to protect children and the vulnerable.

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The Swedish government is planning to license gambling software companies, ban the promotion of illegal gambling and tighten marketing restrictions to protect children and the vulnerable.

The proposals also include a measure to require gambling operators to provide more information to allow officials to track trends.

Ardalan Shekarabi, minister in charge of gambling issues, said the plans seek to improve consumer protection and deliver a “long-term sustainable gaming market”.

Changes would “put an end to aggressive marketing on the most dangerous games”, he said in a press conference on Wednesday (January 26).

Details so far are sketchy, but the chief executive of lottery and gambling trade group SPER said the group generally supports a move to license software companies and a ban on promoting unlicensed gambling.

“We disagree about stricter marketing rules [for licensed operators], and it wasn’t quite clear this morning what the suggestion contains,” said SPER CEO Jenny Nilzon.

“We believe self-regulation has had a positive effect on marketing and the minister seemed to agree, a bit at least,” she said. “We believe that prediction and stability in the gaming market are needed to be able to create a long-term sustainable gaming market.”

Gustaf Hoffstedt, secretary general of BOS trade group, noted there were only a few slides’ worth of information.

“I find it difficult to have an opinion, since so much is unclear,” he said.

One thing seems certain, B2B licences are coming in July 1, 2023, “but we don’t know more than that really”, he said.

Currently, only websites pitching Swedish consumers in Swedish are considered illegal and a move to ban the promotion of illegal gambling will probably cause payment providers to shun such companies, an attorney has said.

Shekarabi’s announcement follows an October report on match-fixing and illegal gambling by Gunnar Larsson, director-general of the Swedish Chamber of Commerce.

The proposals will go to the Law Council for review and most are meant to be in place by January 1, 2023, the ministry said.

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