The plans of Minister of Justice Vincent Van Quickenborne to ban gambling advertising from 2024 are causing concern in the sports world. Certainly if the entire discussion also concerns the National Lottery. Should cycling team Lotto Soudal be concerned? Can Anderlecht still play in the Lotto Park? And can Lotto remain on Union’s shirts? According to Jannie Haek, CEO of the National Lottery, there is no problem.
“We are not a gambling company,” Jannie Haek, CEO of the National Lottery, told Radio 1. Haek believes there is a serious difference between lotteries and sports betting. “There is no problem with lotteries, they have been around for hundreds of years. Until about six years ago there was no problem with gambling addiction, until the gambling market was liberalized. Sports betting is much more dangerous than a lottery. I therefore think it is quite normal that advertising is more strictly regulated and, if necessary, banned.”
In any case, competent State Secretary Sammy Mahdi (CD&V) supports the proposal to ban gambling advertising. His party has been pushing for stricter legislation on gambling advertising for some time. “In ten years, the turnover has increased tenfold. Due to the liberalization of the market, this will go from one to ten billion euros. Koen Geens has already taken many steps in this regard in the past.” And the National Lottery need not be a problem. “An adjustment of the management contract does not take much effort”, it sounds.
MR points out that many good things are in danger of being lost as a result of such an intervention. “Some people don’t care much about the future of football. But I am sure that the future of cultural activities funded by the National Lottery concerns them much more. Let’s have a focused and intelligent policy. Banning is the easy solution,” tweeted MR chairman Georges-Louis Bouchez, also chairman of amateur football club Francs Borains, who therefore expects the National Lottery to be shared with the same brush.
What do you think of the ban on gambling advertising? Should it also apply to the National Lottery?