Spanish industry executives join new RG policy council

30 November 2018

Representatives from some of Spain’s leading gaming operators and suppliers are to sit on a new advisory board that will help shape the country’s responsible gambling strategy.

Sportium CEO Alberto Eljarrat (pictured), R. Franco vice president María José Gallardo and Luckia’s legal counsel Francisco Feijoo are among the 25 new members appointed to the Advisory Council on Responsible Gaming (CAJR). Representatives from Playtech, Tómbola and PAF will also sit on the board, which will be chaired by Juan Espinosa García, the president of regulator Dirección General de Ordenación del Juego (DGOJ), as will representatives from fields such as social health, psychology and consumer rights.

CAJR will provide assistance to the regulator in the development, monitoring and execution of policies related to responsible gambling. It will also look to collaborate with other sectors and conduct research to minimise harm arising from gambling, as well as devising ways to tackle emerging industry trends in terms of responsible gaming.

The board’s formation is part of the DGOJ’s overhaul of its problem gambling strategy after the country's Council of Deputies ruled that gambling addiction should be reclassified as a form of drug addiction. The DGOJ will work closely with Spain’s Finance and Health departments as it seeks to minimise problem gambling.

“Perception of the risks inherent to gaming are evolving, posing new challenges that must be addressed, and it is necessary to incorporate these into the supervision strategy," the DGOJ explained.

“Therefore, with this updated strategy, we intend, on the one hand, to refine the objectives targeted and, on the other, to develop and perfect supervision strategies to adapt to the reality of the gaming market.”

Sportium CEO Eljarrat said he believes the formation of the body is “good news” for Spain’s gaming sector.

"The working group represents all parties involved in the industry, and will allow the collection of points of views from all sides, with the aim of promoting responsible gaming," Eljarrat told iGamingBusiness.com.

This week the DGOJ reported that Spain’s online gaming market saw revenue by 30% year-on-year in Q3, driven by the strong performance of the sports betting and casino verticals. Revenue for the three months ended September 30 rose to €181.8m (£161.9m/$206.5m).