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Portugal Reports Strong Online Gambling Figures for 2017

- February 26, 2018 By Oliver Young -

Gambling law changes in the works in Portugal

Portugal notes record high online gambling figures in 2017 full year report.

In 2017, Portugal has started the first full year of online gambling being regulated on its territory; now the country has reported strong full year revenues. According to the latest report by the Gaming Regulation and Inspection Service, online betting and gaming generated an impressive amount of €122.5 million in the small European country. This amount has come from a total of 800,000 registered players at Portuguese online gaming sites.

As it was revealed by the “Online gaming activity in Portugal” report focusing on the 4th quarter of the past year, a total of 17,600 players used the self-exclusion option offered at gambling sites. This number is for 4,600 users higher in comparison to the 3rd quarter of 2017. Thus, even though the number of people that partake in online gambling and betting is relatively high, problem gamblers seem to use the services created to protect them.

Fourth Quarter Earnings Very High

Of the €122.5 million (around $152 million) earnings, the Portuguese gaming regulator Serviço Regulação e Inspeção de Jogos do Turismo de Portugal (SRIJ) has revealed that the government received a total of €54.2 million. A tax of 12% on sports betting turnover was offered as the main reason for the high amount. Nevertheless, experts believe that this tax should be lowered in the future in order to create a more attractive model to a large range of operators.

One of the main reasons for the high generated yearly amount are the 4th quarter figures reported by the regulator. Namely, the all time high earnings reached impressive €36.5 million. Almost a €10 million improvement came from seven locally-approved Portuguese online gaming operators, compared to the same period in 2016. The improvement is strong €7 million when compared to the 3rd quarter of 2017. Sports betting also noted increase in revenue; this sector made €20.5 million, which notes a 26% jump in comparison to the 3rd quarter reports.

Ever since starting the freshly regulated online gambling market back in May, 2016, Portugal has witnessed sports betting being a major source of income. This trend has continued in 2017 as well, with sports betting revenue reaching massive €68.1 million.

When it comes to online casino, alongside online poker, the revenue reached €54.4 million. The largest contribution in this sector was received by online slots, whose share was soaring 45%. Poker cash games noted a contribution of much lower 19.7%, while French roulette came third with 19.2%. Blackjack and poker tournaments conclude the list with respective shares of 9.2% and 6.7%.

Most Gamblers Aged Between 35 and 44

Another interesting information revealed by the report is the players’ demography. Namely, the main share of online gamblers, 61.3%, were aged between 35 and 44. A total of 39.3% were between 25 and 34, while those between 18 and 24 hold a lower share of 28.8%. This shows that online gambling in Portugal for the time being is the most popular among middle-aged people, while younger generations still haven’t been fully attracted to it.

Porto is the main centre for online gambling with 22% of the gamblers living there. The top three list is concluded with Lisbon (19.5%) and Braga (9.7%).

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