The Italian government has adopted the new law regarding banning the entirety of gambling advertising.
Technically speaking, the law decree enforcing the gambling advertising ban has already come into force – on 14 July 2018, to be precise.
However, there is a provision in the law that enables ongoing contractual agreements to take place, and which are planned to extended until 16 July 2019, if everything goes according to plan.
In addition, the law decree says that the existing gambling advertising regulations are applicable nevertheless, which proves that certain bits in the law collide.
In other words, opposing to the European country’s government’s request for a change, particular parts of the law simply do not allow the law to be adopted entirely. The consequence of the collision is that the ban does not really apply to anything for now. Moreover, the law decree still needs to be ratified by the Parliament, up to which it is what might happen next. Simply put, the Parliament decides whether the band will implement changes or the body cancels it.
So, the question that imposes itself is if the gambling advertising ban is even legal?
While some of the aspects of the ban would arguably applicable to some gambling advertising activities, there are points to be considered before reaching the fina decision. This is a law decree which is an urgent measure that was not urgent since a transitional period of up to one year was granted. Thence what technically happened was an abuse of the regulatory instrument of the law decree.
Since this technical regulation has not been notified to the European Commission with the required three months “stand still” period provided by the EU Directive 2015/1535, this is a measure that is completely banning online gambling because online gaming operators can market their services only through remote channels of communication.
So if no advertising whatsoever can be exercised, operators cannot make the public aware of their services and which as a result means that they cannot do business. The Italian Constitution and the European Union principle to provide services are against this kind of disproportionate limitation of the freedom of doing business.
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