Belgium has further reduced the maximum number of online sports betting licences from 31 to 30 has been announced by the Belgian Gambling Commission.

New limits on the Belgian gaming market continue to be introduced. The Belgian Gambling Commission has announced the implementation of a royal decree cutting the maximum number of online sports betting licences by one, from 31 to 30.

The new limit will apply to online sports betting licences, known as F1 licences, until July 2031. The number of available permits had already been reduced from 34 last year.

It’s the latest change in Belgium following the announcement that weekly deposit limits for online gaming will be reduced from €500 to €200 from October 20.

Players may request that their deposit limit be lifted but operators must notify the Belgian regulator of the request and check with the National Bank that the player is not listed as being in default on its Central Credit Register. As long as the player is not listed, the deposit limit can be lifted three days after a request is made.

Meanwhile, the Belgian government intends to ban advertising for all gambling apart from the national lottery from the start of next year. However, the European Commission has extended its standstill period on the legislation following a request from the government of Malta.

The proposed ban would cover advertising in print, TV, radio and online media – including social media – as well as posters in public places and personalised digital or post advertising.

The Belgian Association of Gaming Operators (BAGO) has criticised the proposal, saying it would cause players difficulty when it comes to distinguishing legal from illegal operators. It highlighted a survey from UGent showing that one in three gaming operators that advertise on social media in Belgium are unlicensed and operating illegally.

The Belgian National Lottery has denied allegations that it effectively bought the proposed ban.

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