Spanish Socialists Seek To Hobble Online Gambling

Non-legislative proposal proposes restrictions on bonuses and other measures designed to reduce accessibility

The currently struggling Spanish online gambling market could see further declines if the opposition Spanish Socialist Workers Party should come to power.

The party has presented a non-legislative proposal aimed at reducing accessibility to online gambling and prohibiting the offering of VIP bonuses and other player incentives, which it claims contribute toward the dangers of problem gambling and excessive consumption.

The proposal has the backing of the Joint Commission for the Study of Drug Problems and is to be published in the parliamentary gazette.

Measures recommended in the document include more stringent identification and registration formalities for self-excluded gamblers who wish to return to gambling, and strict spending and time limits for players.

The party has already proposed to the Committee for Housing and Public Administration that online players be denied the right to offset losses against winnings in calculating tax liabilities.

The ruling coalition party does not support the Socialist moves, and it is therefore unlikely that these initiatives will gain any significant parliamentary traction.

The party's position does, however, provide a perspective on what might happen should it rise to power in the 2015 elections.

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