Chile’s Chamber of Deputies passes bill that bans betting ads in sports

The Chilean Chamber of Deputies approved this Wednesday, on general terms, the bill that prohibits the advertising of online betting operators in sporting events and clubs of any discipline.

The initiative was approved with 118 votes in favor, one against, and three abstentions, during the first procedure in the Legislative Branch. Now it must continue its debate in particular and, subsequently, it will pass to the Senate.

The bill prohibits the execution of any type of act or contract between online betting platforms and sports organizations, whether professional, clubs, associations, foundations, federations, and others. The initiative establishes sanctions such as fines ranging from 150 to 2,000 UTM for violators. It also stipulates that those who have ownership or shares in online betting companies cannot be part of the board of directors of a sports organization, whether professional or not.

Another article of the initiative prohibits advertising and sponsorship of platforms related to sports, “regardless of the means or support through which it is transmitted or published, and regardless of the time or event in which it is advertised or sponsored”. In addition, it prohibits the advertising of these platforms “on any type of clothing, apparel or equipment of members of sports organizations, whatever their denomination and sports discipline, whether they are athletes, coaching staff, leaders, medical or auxiliary professionals”; and “in premises intended for training or competitions”.

According to what was approved in this first instance, legally authorized bookmakers may broadcast advertising on television only between 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m.; on radio, between 8:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m.; and in written media, it may not be inserted in sports supplements or segments.

In addition, they must include an “express warning, oral or written, about the consequences of online gambling and betting, with special mention to minors”.

Marco Antonio Sulantay, deputy of the Independent Democratic Union, and author of the initiative clarified that the bill must return to the Sports Commission, “where we intend to improve it, expand it if necessary, and the most important thing is that when it leaves the commission again and goes to the Senate, that they also have the respective promptness because they are legislating on a very delicate subject, where there are many resources involved and there is tax collection that the State of Chile is not receiving”.

The parliamentarian stated that he will ask the Government to participate and give priority to the bill submitted to the Economy Commission, which seeks to regulate online gambling.