Fixed-odds betting regulation enhanced to international standards

The long-awaited Italian Ministry of Economy and Finance’s decree, enhancing the fixed-odds betting regulation to international standards, has finally been published in the Official Journal and will now enter into force on October 28, 2022.

The new Ministerial decree regulates fixed-odds betting on sporting and non-sporting events — excluding, however, horse racing — providing for these products’ regulation improvements. To put things into context, the betting-regulation reform originated back in 2017 following an extensive consultancy process among the Italian gambling regulator (ADM) and both ground-based and online-betting trade associations and licensees. Such operator/regulator joint cooperation, which allowed the draft reform to benefit from multi-knowledge sharing, was welcomed by the Italian Council of State, when releasing its preliminary positive advice on the draft decree in January 2018.

While this cooperation should be the strongest pillar for a successful regulation, it has unfortunately stopped since then, thus this fixed-odds betting regulation remains a unique example of enhanced cooperation.

The entry into force of this decree was even frozen until 2022, presumably by reason of a political context averse to gambling and which originated later on the gambling-advertising ban.

As regards the improvements brought by this new decree, these are significant in terms of alignment with the products’ management with international standards, to the benefit of the players and the licensed industry, as well as to the Italian State.

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