Bookmakers of Kazakhstan will be obliged to provide assistance to addicted players

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The authorities of Kazakhstan proposed to develop special methods for treating gambling addiction at the state level, as well as to create a register of bookmaker users who, if gambling addiction is detected, will be prohibited from betting on sports.

At a round table meeting held on January 25, expert Talgat Kaliev said that at the moment the authorities do not have accurate data on the annual turnover of bookmakers. According to the information, only BC Olimp annually receives from 200 to 250 billion tenge (about 43 billion rubles). However, Talgat Kaliev said that such data is inaccurate and needs to be double-checked: The data has been received so far only from the Olimp bookmaker. Preliminary figures show that around 350,000 people visit bookmakers every year, or 900 players a day. The expert also proposed to introduce into the legislation a norm that would oblige bookmakers from Kazakhstan to pay for the treatment of those who are faced with the problem of gambling addiction. However, the executive director of the association of bookmakers Dauren Kusainovna said that the companies are ready to provide assistance, but clear rules must be created for this: A person who, for example, has lost millions, can contact us and ask us to pay for treatment. This is not entirely correct. Therefore, a special mechanism should be created, according to which all necessary assistance will be provided. Also, the executive director of the association of bookmakers did not agree with the announced amounts of bookmakers’ turnover, but did not name the exact amounts of income, citing the fact that these data are confidential. Let us recall that the Latvian public organization Esi brīvs, together with the crisis resolution center Skalbes, has opened a helpline in Latvia for people who are addicted to gambling.

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