Romanian Lower House Unanimously Approves ‘Slot Machine Law’

April 15, 2024 | Gaming Machines

MADRID, Spain (April 12, 2024) — Romania  has announced a  ban on gambling establishments  in small cities and towns with less than 15,000 inhabitants. The so-called ‘Slot Machine Law’ has been approved unanimously.

But Spanish media outlet ‘El Recreativo’ reported industry figures complain that they have not been consulted and hope that authorities  will control the black market as promised.

“It is the first law approved in 30 years against this mafia that even controls politics. “Right now  we are fighting against an industry  that has a turnover between 10,000 and 12,000 million euros,” declared Alfred Simonis, leader of the Social Democratic deputies (PSD).

Despite the unanimity, there were disagreements in the chamber. Ionut Mosteanu, opposition leader,  questioned the population threshold set by lawmakers.

“They thought that slot machines only harm 15,000 people. There was not even a debate to see how many municipalities meet the requirements. “Why not 16,000, 17,000, why not two million, that way  they would definitely ban them ,” he said.

Gambling venues have become ubiquitous in Romania in recent decades. The National Gaming Office, a state agency that controls and authorizes the sector, has registered  12,000 sports betting , bingo, casino and lottery rooms.

100,000 people addicted to gambling in Romania

There are no recent studies on how many people in Romania are addicted to gambling. The last one was carried out in 2016 and determined that  there were about 100,000 addicted people  throughout the country. In reality, that number could be much higher.

But research recently carried out by Save the Children shows that one in seven children in Romania  spends money on gambling , and one in 10 belongs to families where one of the parents does so.

SOURCE: El Recreativo.

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