Gambling Legislation

No gambling segment safe from Ireland’s advertising reforms

No gambling segment safe from Ireland's advertising reforms

Upcoming legislation in Ireland will prohibit all gambling ads during the day

When the upcoming ban on daytime TV gambling ads is introduced in Ireland, no gambling segment will be spared. The government says even horse racing TV channels will not be exempt from the new law.

The Cabinet approved the Gambling Regulation Bill in 2022, which will see stricter regulation where gambling advertising, including online ads, will be banned between 5:30 AM and 9:00 PM.

In a letter to the Fianna Fáil parliamentary party, Minister of State for the Department of Justice James Browne detailed his meetings this week with Horse Racing Ireland (HRI) and the Association of Irish Racecourses (AIR).

The representatives presented their concerns to the minister regarding the proposed legislation. Browne said, “HRI advised me and my officials this week that it had entered into a commercial agreement in May 2023 regarding the sale of exclusive TV rights to Irish Racing between 2024 and 2028 inclusive.”

“This was after the adoption by the Government of the cross-party Justice Committee recommendation of a watershed advertising ban and after the Dáil had unanimously approved the Bill at Second Stage,” he continued in the letter.

Browne says HRI representatives sought an exemption from the gambling advertising ban for two dedicated racing channels “as this would be more commercially advantageous to HRI.”

“This proposal would, in effect, give a monopoly on gambling advertising in the State to these two channels,” Browne said.

The minister said many have encouraged him to place even stricter regulations on the gambling industry. However, Browne says he thinks the watershed ban on gambling advertising “is the most appropriate position at present.”

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