New Gambling Regulations Arrive in Galicia, Spain

Posted on: October 3, 2022, 08:18h. 

Last updated on: October 3, 2022, 01:45h.

Spain’s gambling industry continues to evolve in order to respond to new challenges. With most autonomous communities introducing updated legislation, Galicia has added its name to the list.

La Coruña, Galicia, Spain
A typical street scene in La Coruña, Galicia, Spain. Galicia is introducing new gambling laws, making it the latest of the country’s autonomous communities to update its regulations. (Image: All The Rooms)

Galicia’s Council has approved a new restrictive bill that will limit the number of betting establishments and machines per location. The new President of Galicia, Alfonso Rueda, reported that the Council of the Board gave the go-ahead to approve the bill, which will limit the growth of gambling in the region.

At a press conference, Rueda explained that the project seeks to guarantee responsible gaming and take care of the most vulnerable people. He also explained that the previous regulations had been in place for over three decades, and that it was time for a change.

More Gambling Comes to Galicia

The new legislation will allow two casinos, 12 bingo halls, 118 gaming parlors, and 41 betting shops. In total, there will be a maximum of 175 gambling establishments in Galicia. Currently, there are 40 betting shops, two casinos, 11 bingo halls, and 115 gaming parlors.

In addition, the legislation prohibits granting loans or credits to gamblers. The use of bonuses, free games, or any element that can be exchanged for money is not allowed, either. For their part, Galicia’s municipalities may apply other limitations and additional restrictions regarding the opening of gambling establishments.

There will also be new limitations on gaming machines in bars, restaurants, and leisure establishments. Each can only operate a maximum of two. Likewise, Galicia has set a maximum of 3,600 authorizations for betting machines in other hospitality locations.

There is also a 12,000-unit limit on Type B gaming machines, which mostly covers slot machines. All gaming devices outside of casinos will also need to include mechanisms to prevent gameplay by minors.

Gambling establishments must be at least 300 meters (984 feet) from education and addiction centers. They must also be the same distance from other gambling locations.

There are new fines that will be in place, as well. They start at €100 (US$97) and can go as high as €100,000 (US$97,580). The government will review the scale to ensure that the fine, if necessary, is greater than not complying with the regulations.

Gambling companies will have two years to become compliant with all of the new regulations.

Galicia Follows in Catalonia’s Footsteps

Andalusia, Madrid, Valencia, and other Spanish communities all introduced new gambling laws this year. Most recently, just prior to Galicia, Catalonia became part of the group, as well.

The new regulations ensure that the maximum number of bingo halls will remain at 75. Throughout the community, pending final approval, only four casinos are allowed. In Vila-seca and Salou, two popular tourist destinations, the government may approve additional gambling facilities.

Across Catalonia, there can only be up to a maximum of 127 gaming arcades. There will also be a new definition of what constitutes a gambling facility, but this still needs approval.