Finnish Government Worries about casino

When so many drastic measures are taken to enable people to resume gambling on, perhaps some countries are right not to reopen land-based casinos at the moment. The coronavirus pandemic does cost the gambling industry dearly: the American Gambling Associations estimated in March that US economy would suffer $21 billion economic loss from casinos' inaction. And yet, digital casinos, which Finns call "nettikasinot," remain thriving in lockdown. Bloomberg reported back in March that stocks of such casino operators as 888, Gamesys Group Plc, and Playtech gained from the coronavirus pandemic. As soon as the quarantine started, people turned to online gambling with heightened enthusiasm. Some of them felt bored in lockdown and looked for an entertaining pastime at home. Those who were laid off from work searched for an additional income. In Finland alone, more than 3,0000 new customers joined the websites operated by the state-owned casino agency Veikkaus in order to play blackjack, roulette, and slot games.

There are so many people gambling online during the quarantine in Finland that the government has even become concerned about their economic situation and has tightened the limits for online gambling. Aware that in the time of the coronavirus pandemic, gambling can get out of control, Veikkaus has lowered the loss limit of its past-paced gambling games. Since the first of May, the maximum loss limit has been reduced from 2,000 euros to 500 euros per month. The maximum daily loss limit has been lowered from 1,000 euros to 500 euros. This means that if a player loses 500 euros within one day, he or she will not be able to gamble again until the next month. The Ministry of the Interior is convinced that these measures will help reduce the harm that Finnish people might be inflicting on themselves by going on a gambling spree in lockdown.

This amendment will remain in force until 30 September 2020, when, it is hoped, all quarantine restrictions will be lifted in Finland. Meanwhile, the Finnish government is considering to review the Lotteries Act with a view to help Finnish people keep their gambling in check.