Further Restrictions on Several Forms of Gambling Advertising to Be Unveiled by the Dutch Government

According to an associated bill submitted by the Netherlands’ Minister for Legal protection, Dutch authorities are about to officially roll out further restrictions on gambling advertising over the next 3 years.

The piece of legislation, which seeks to bring some amendments to the Decree on recruitment, advertising and gambling addiction prevention, was submitted to the Council of Ministers by Minister Franc Weerwind who described the legislative motion as an important step towards further restrictions on gambling ads in the country. Minister Weerwind highlighted that addiction prevention is important and needs to outweigh the aggressive advertising strategies used by gambling operators in order to protect vulnerable people in the country from being affected by gambling-related harm.

As mentioned above, new restrictions on gambling advertising in the Netherlands are set to be introduced over the next 3 years.

As of January 2023, all forms of untargeted gambling advertising are set to be officially suspended. Gambling companies will still have the option to promote their services online. This type of advertising, however, will be available under strict monitoring carried out by the Government to help protect vulnerable individuals.

The second phase of the planned restrictions in the Netherlands’ gambling advertising policy is set to start in 2024. As part of it, gambling companies will be banned from becoming sponsors of sporting events. A year later, in 2025, the ban is set to extend to shirt sponsorship agreements and gambling advertising at sporting venues across the country.

Gambling Advertising Restrictions to Be Introduced with Phased-in Restrictions

The legislative proposal, which is set to bring amendments to gambling advertising provisions in the Netherlands came only a month after Minister Weerwind revealed in the House of Representatives that excessive and untargeted gambling advertising threatens young Dutch residents. At the time, he also shared that the country should proceed with the planned reforms for the gambling sector with caution.

Furthermore, he explained that his proposal for the implementation of the various restrictions in stages would provide local sports clubs with enough time to seek and find alternative sponsorship agreements so that their revenue streams do not suffer.

The proposed piece of legislation is set to be discussed later this week before becoming subject to public consultations for a period of 8 weeks. During the consultations, each industry stakeholder will be given the chance to submit evidence and comment on the proposal. Then, the associated bill will be sent to the House of Representatives and the Senate for further consideration while still subjected to public discussions.

If accepted, the proposed amendments to the Decree will affect a number of top-flight Dutch football clubs, including AFC Ajax and AZ Alkmaar, as well as the entire Eredivisie, considering the fact that Holland Casino is its responsible gambling partner.

Recently, the Eredivisie champion AFC Ajax has unveiled a sponsorship agreement with Unibet, the flagship gambling brand of Kindred Group, with the deal set to expire at the end of 2026. AZ Alkmaar, on the other hand, unveiled the gambling operator Kensino as its partner by the end of 2026.