Norway’s state-owned betting business Norsk Rikstoto have proposed that they will establish a spending limit for all customers.
If the cap is implemented, players may bet and lose no more than NOK20,000 (£1,779/€2,019/$2,222) every 30 days. Players could however roll over any balance at the end of the period for up to 90 days. This means that they could spend up to NOK60,000 in 30 days every three months.
Lotteri-of stiftelsestilsynet (Lotteritilsyney) has supported the implementation and director Henrik Nordal said that it could be a “safety net” for those who struggle to control their gambling. Nordal admitted that critics claimed the spending cap could reduce revenue for the country’s horse racing sector but argued that if players are protected, they could take precedence over growing income in the industry.
“We see the need to clarify [Norsk Rikstoto’s] role here,” he said. “Norsk Rikstoto’s main duty is to provide a safe and responsible way to gamble.
“That the horse racing industry benefits from its profits is a consequence, and not a reason, as to why it is one of the few operators licensed to offer real-money gambling in Norway.”
Nordal dismissed suggestions that there could be an exception for high-spending gamblers and added that they are as much as risk for problems as those who spend lower amounts.
“The high-spending players are gambling too much, and they are losing a lot,” he said. “They are as much at risk of developing problems as other players, and Norsk Rikstoto has not provided evidence to suggest the opposite.
“It would therefore be irresponsible to create a special scheme for these players were they can overspend,” he explained.
Lotteritilsynet is only able to make suggestions on whether the proposal should be brought into effect. The Norwegian Ministry of Agriculture and Food are set to make the final decision. If the proposal is accepted, the limits will take effect from 1 January next year.
The only other operator which is licenced to offer real-money gambling in Norway is Norsk Tipping and have already introduced a NOK20,000 spending cap for players. They have also tightened their responsible gaming controls and blocked players from spending above NOK20,000.
This was followed by the launch of a new feature in July, which showed online players their recent gambling activity upon logging into their accounts.