Kenya announced new gambling regulations, which includes putting a stop on all gambling advertising outdoors and banning most types of gambling ads on social media.
Kenyan lawmakers decided to take severe measures to restrict illegal gambling behavior and their first step towards achieving this goal is setting restrictions in the gambling advertising sector. The gambling industry in Africa has progressed quite significantly in the past few years, and the lawmakers deemed these regulatory actions as necessary.
Fred Matiang’I, Kenya’s Interior Minister, introduced new rules on May 2nd this year and it won’t be long until they come into full effect. It’s expected to happen before the end of May when the promotion of gambling will become totally different then it was thus far.
For example, gambling companies that want to promote their products and services via social media will have to submit their ads first and wait for approval before those ads are actually published. The Betting Control and Licensing Board will be in charge of going through those adverts and giving their approval if they find them appropriate or rejecting them otherwise.
Besides social media, some important changes will be introduced when it comes to TV advertising as well. According to the new regulation rules, television will not be allowed to show gambling adverts between 6 am and 10 pm. The endorsement by celebrities will be forbidden as well.
When it comes to outdoors gambling advertising, those actions will also be prohibited. This ban refers mainly to promoting gambling via billboards, although ads on sports betting shops’ windows are still questionable.
The gambling advertising sector is very important, and Kenya is not the only country to realize that. Italy, the UK, and Sweden also took some measures in order to improve these regulations and put an end on unwanted actions when it comes to gambling adverts.
Fred Matiang’I commented on the recent restrictions made in his country. He emphasized the importance of proper behavior in the gambling industry since the lack of it can lead to some serious problems. This is especially relevant for young adults who are gullible and whose lives can be endangered in many different ways.
Matiang’I promised that this step is only the beginning of improvements in this sector because nothing can compare with young lives of Kenyan people. He also stated that he plans on carrying through the recent prohibition of gambling. He’s concerned about the high rate of young people who bet, not only in Kenya but all across Africa. There are about 76% wagering young people in Kenya, and approximately 1 million people were not in positions to repay their debts which is why they were put on a blacklist.
The deadline for complying with the latest restrictions is June 30th. In case locally active gambling companies fail to comply with those rules, their business will be in jeopardy, according to Fred Matiang’I.
This online gambling ads restriction is not Kenya’s only effort to improve the situation in the gambling sector. They’ve also revived a discontinued 20% tax on gambling winnings, and now they’re waiting for the court to make the final decision.