Minister Edith Schippers (VWS) wants to prevent that less money will be contributed for sports with a new Gambling Law. This is what the minister said in the budget debate about sports. After questions were raised by   fellow party members Matthijs Huizing (VVD), Pia Dijkstra (D66) and Hanke Bruins Slot (CDA).

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Annually millions are given to the sports council NOC*NSF from the proceeds of the Lotto. This contribution is already at risk due to declining revenues. This year an amount of 44 million euro was involved, whereas previously, on an annual basis, it was nearly 60 million.

Concerns exist that the revenues from the Lotto will be further reduced if foreign gambling companies will be allowed to operate in the Netherlands. Schippers wants to prevent this from happening: “I cannot give any guarantees, but I propose that the amount going to the NOC*NSF remains the same. The sport should not  need to suffer from sleepless nights worrying about this.” Schippers said.

A new gambling law is being prepared by the Ministry of Security and Justice. Schippers : “I expect that it will be tabled in the cabinet by the end of January. There is a regular consultation going on, including the Finance people, in which I constantly emphasize the importance of the fact that,  that particular amount going to the sport, remains the same.  It just needs to be well regulated if it, in fact, does become a new law.”

Tjeerd Decks (PvdA) expressed his concern about the possible liberalization of the gambling market in the Netherlands and therefore the potentially greater risk of match fixing. He also pointed to the plans of SBS 6 to start a gambling channel on TV. “More opportunities to gamble are a danger to the purity of the sport,” said Van Decks. He doubts whether in the Netherlands match fixing would be contested decisively enough.

“It’s mainly a matter for Justice, but definitely also for the sport.” Shippers acknowledged that: “Match Fixing occurs, but in my view it does not corrupt any competitions in the Netherlands. We need to watch this carefully. “

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