Lithuania Rubber Stamps Blanket Gambling Advertising Prohibition

Lithuania has banned all forms of gambling advertising for both online and retail operators from 1 July.

A new amendment to the country's Gambling Law prohibits the promotion of gambling in any form or by any means, including inline advertising on television and radio, as well as marketing promotions, discounts and bonus offers.

The respective amendments were adopted by 105 votes with 14 abstentions.

The government said the blanket ban was designed to address gambling-related damage in the country, which they believe has increased due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

It is already forbidden to encourage gambling by offering players incentives to gamble in Lithuania or organize gambling outside of licensed establishments and operators.

Firms targeting the country were also expected to include gambling-related harm warnings in all marketing materials, in accordance with the law, which took effect July 1, 2020.

Virginijus Dauksis, director of the Office of Gambling Control, said that the regulator has received many complaints about gambling operators who have not fulfilled their obligations or fulfilled the promises made when inviting people to gamble.

However, Mantas Zakarka, a spokesman for the Lithuanian National Gambling and Gaming Business Association, warned that the ban would prevent new operators from entering the market and could also act as an incentive for black market businesses.