Ireland’s proposed revised gaming and gambling regulation, the Gaming and Lotteries Bill 2019, has advanced to the committee stage.
The new legislation calls for imposing age restrictions on gambling and also reducing maximum stake limits on gambling machines amongst several other measures.
The bill underwent a second-reading and has now been passed onto the country’s Select Committee on Justice and Equality. The new legislation has already been approved by Seanad Éireann, the upper house of the Irish Parliament (Oireachtas).
Fianna Fáil Deputy Jim O’Callaghan said: “We believe there is a need for much more thorough control and regulation of gambling. Regrettably, the legislation before us deals only with very small aspects of the issues concerning gambling that are problematic in this country.”
Minister of State, David Stanton commented: “One of the things I have discovered even during the course of this bill is that it is extremely complex to draft. It takes a long time. I was involved in the pre-legislative scrutiny phase through a committee at that time. Since then, things have changed again.”
Irish regulators have been facing the brunt of stakeholders and lawmakers over delays in implementing the new gambling regulations.
The critics had pointed out that the government has been lax in addressing the issue of faulty gambling machines and that they have not done enough to control the increasing cases of gambling addiction in the country.