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Finnish Gambling Association ry

The purpose of the association is to bring under one roof experts and stakeholders in the gambling industry and to share information and facilitate discussion in order to develop the existing gambling system in Finland to  reflect the industry developments and the requirement of high-level consumer protection.

 

PURPOSE OF THE ASSOCIATION

Purpose of the association is to bring under one roof experts and stakeholders in the gambling industry and to share information and facilitate discussion in order to develop the existing gambling system in Finland to  reflect the industry developments and the requirement of high-level consumer protection.

The association produces up-to-date information related to gambling and corresponding regulation. It actively participates in the industry debate regarding the development of the existing system in Finland with the aim to guarantee that the highest industry standards are taken into account.

The association monitors economic, social and legislative developments of the gambling industry. When  appropriate, the association issues statements and reports and organizes panel discussions on the current developments and on other relevant matters.

WELCOME OF THE CHAIR

The Finnish gambling market is in transition. It has been a rocky road for Veikkaus since the RAY, Veikkaus and Finntoto merged in 2017. The company’s revenue level has fallen about 40 percent from the 2016 figures, and  the official gambling problem numbers have not yet shown a significant decline. The goals set for Veikkaus by the Finnish state have not been achieved.

The current situation cannot continue for long. The Finnish government has also understood this and decided to make changes to the Lotteries Act, which is the corner stone of regulating gambling activities in Finland. The amended version of the Lotteries Act entered into force in the beginning of 2022. Unfortunately, the process of drafting the reform was anything but professional. The outcome (i.e Veikkaus’ monopoly) seemed to be decided first, appears to have been decided first, and only then the argumentation was developed to legitimise it.

Conclusions on the effects of the  Lotteries Act reform cannot be drawn sooner than in the beginning of 2023, which is just before the next parliamentary elections will take place in Finland. It is to be expected that the Lotteries Act reform will not achieve its goals. Given this, the exploration of alternatives to the existing gambling system will likely start in Finland.  In their work, the decision-makers must have an adequate understanding how the available alternatives impact on the essential variables such as the number of gambling problems, gambling revenue, market shares, and system acceptability in customers’ eyes.

Achieving the adequate understanding requires the availability of diverse and neutral factual information. Lack of such information has been a significant obstacle, leading to a situation where it has not even been possible to seriously consider the real alternatives for the monopoly system.

In Finland, the source of information regarding the gambling regime has been accustomed to Veikkaus, which certainly has the necessary know-how. On the other hand, first and the foremost the company always strives to promote its own interests. The Finnish Gambling Association aims to fill this gap and share diverse and neutral information from the various perspectives of gambling.

Our goal is to help Finland make our next gambling system the best in the world!

 

Jari vähänen
Finnish Gambling Association ry Chairman of the Board

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