It’s a serious charge for the Swedish government. One of its own MPs says it is misrepresenting the data for online gambling.
This particular politician is challenging new online casino restrictions. Recently, a new deposit and spending regulation for online casinos was imposed by Social Security Minister, Ardalan Shekarabi. He intends to protect consumers.
A misunderstanding or misrepresentation?
But John Weinerhall, a parliamentarian representing the Moderate Party is alleging the skewing of gambling activity. Nevertheless, Sweden’s Spelinspektionen (gambling regulatory agency) is showing a decline in overall gambling activity since the pandemic lockdown.
Weinerhall states that email exchanges show the government was aware of this data five days prior to Shekarabi’s announcement in April. Now he is calling on the Constitutional Committee to investigate the matter.
Here is what happened. Weinerhall said he was prompted to accept the regulation in view of reported excessive online gambling. He is now of the opinion that the restrictions will reduce the government’s ability to channel customers to Swedish-licensed online casinos.
In reality, studies show that online betting has been down given the suspension of major sporting events. It is certainly nothing to be overly concerned about. Excessive gambling is restricted to a small minority. The risk has been exaggerated.
In any case, Spelinspektionen will be launching a new awareness campaign of its Spelpaus online gambling self-exclusion registry. It will air seven responsible gambling messages on television, online ads and social media platforms.