Madrid Council puts a firm break on gambling establishments

Madrid City Council has followed the lead of its Barcelona counterpart by confirming that it will freeze all further gambling-related retail concessions from opening within its municipal district.

The decision has been confirmed by Madrid Council President Isabel Diaz Ayuso, who stated that the city’s executive would maintain the measure until the Spanish government implements its long-awaited federal decree on gambling.

Speaking to local media, Diaz Ayuso stated that Madrid’s executive seeks to support the city’s public health networks dealing with addiction, which have seen gambling-related businesses expand by ‘125% across Madrid districts during the past five years’ – a trend that Diaz Ayuso states is ‘well above Spain’s average‘.

Diaz Ayuso further confirmed that the council would move to establish Madrid’s first gambling addiction treatment facility.

Madrid’s council continues its tougher stance on gambling operators, which this summer saw the executive demand that all licensed gambling premises implement new ID verification provisions within a six-month period.

The council has also expanded penalties on ‘gambling infringements’ related to underage engagements, in-store verification failures and marketing standards.

This summer, regional broadcaster TeleMadrid was forced by the city’s executive to terminate all advertising of gambling services across its TV and Radio networks.

On 10 November, Spain held its second general election this year, in which the minority PSOE government fail to break Spain’s parliamentary deadlock.

An under-pressure PSOE will once again seek to form a ‘socialist coalition government’ with anti-austerity Podemos, who maintain that Spain’s should implement the strictest code possible on gambling operators.

Following the conclusion of Spain’s latest general election, gambling incumbents wait to see whether PSOE will move forward on imposing its new Royal Decree implementing new federal restrictions on gambling services.

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