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Ireland’s DoJ to support gambling bill in 2023

| By Marese O'Hagan
Ireland's Department of Justice has voiced support for the progression of the Gambling Regulation Bill in its 2023 Justice Plan.

The 2023 Justice Plan is the third and final installment of plans that were created to outline the objectives set out in Ireland’s 2021-23 statement of strategy.

James Browne TD, Ireland’s minister of state for law reform, said that the 2022 edition of Ireland’s Justice Plan had presented the Gambling Regulation Bill, which is one of his “key priorities” for progression in 2023.

“Justice Plan 2022 delivered significant progress across the justice system and, in particular, it delivered one of my key priorities, to publish the Gambling Regulation Bill 2022,” said Browne. “As committed to in the programme for government, this bill is a true milestone and long awaited legislation.”

“It is an important and necessary bill and reform, designed to meet the challenges of gambling responsibly in 21st century Ireland.”

Brown said that the 2023 Justice Plan aimed to move the bill through Oireachtas, Ireland’s national parliament.

“The primary objective of the bill is to present the framework for a robust regulatory and licensing regime for the gambling sector in Ireland,” he continued. “Justice Plan 2023 commits to bringing this bill through the Oireachtas to allow for the establishment of the Gambling Regulatory Authority of Ireland.”

The bill was published in December 2022. If passed, it would establish a regulatory body for gambling in Ireland, which would be known as Údarás Rialála Cearrbhachais na hÉireann – the Irish Gambling Regulatory Authority.

The language of the bill implies that all forms of promotional activity could be banned in Ireland. In addition, operators will be prohibited from using free bets to induce players to gamble.

Overseeing the effort

The Department of Justice said that it would support the movement and implementation of the bill in 2023,

“We will also support the establishment of the Gambling Regulatory Authority, and the CEO designate of the authority, as we progress the Gambling Regulation Bill towards enactment and commencement later this year – introducing a robust regulatory and licensing system for gambling in Ireland,” it said.

Specifically, the department will provide management services which will help with establishing the country’s regulatory authority.

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