A few days ago, the Belgian government issued an official announcement, pointing out that from July 1, 2023 onwards, all forms of betting game advertisements, including physical and online, will be banned. But there is one exception, that is, the Belgian National Lottery will not be subject to the ban, which means that in the future Belgian people can only see the chance game advertisements published by the Belgian National Lottery.
• The Belgian government strongly cracks down on the gaming industry
Belgian Minister of Justice Vincent Van Quickenborne said in an interview with the media that the strict restrictions on gambling advertising in Belgium are necessary because the normalization and generalization of gambling must stop. Not only that, but from January 1, 2025, sports advertisements will be banned in stadiums; gaming operators will not be able to sponsor sports teams from January 1, 2028.
• Strong backlash from local legal operations is useless
When the Belgian royal decree was proposed, it sparked a backlash from the local gaming operator associations, who argued that the ban would not benefit consumers and would make it more difficult for players to distinguish between legal and illegal operators. There is data pointing out that as many as 1/3 of operators who promote and publicize games of chance on social media in Belgium do not hold legal licenses and are operating illegally.
• The National Lottery is the largest advertiser in Belgium
The Belgian National Lottery is the largest gaming advertiser in the area, and its gaming advertisements account for about 40% of the country’s total. It has therefore been questioned and criticized by the outside world. Opponents believe that all games of chance are risky, and the risks of scratch games and lotteries are the same as those of sports betting, which makes people question whether the Belgian government really issued this ban with its consumers as the starting point.