Spanish Sports Association Claims Betting Industry Underpays

José Hidalgo, the president of the Spanish Sports Association, is seeking assistance from the government to collect further compensation from the gambling industry in Spain which has benefitted off sports.

Spanish Gambling Firms Not Contributing Enough

Gambling companies aren’t paying enough in Spain, this is the sentiment Spanish Sports Association (ADESP) president José Hidalgo shared with stakeholders and the Ministry of Consumer Affairs earlier this week, arguing that gambling firms have enriched themselves at the expense of sport without paying enough back to the industry they rely on.

According to the official statement published on the organization’s website, gambling firms owed “significant compensation” to sports franchises which have been effectively defining the existence of sports wagers in the first place.

The money, Hidalgo argues, would be used to bolster sports in the country. In the organization’s first work meeting, Hidalgo didn’t waste time and pitched several initiatives ADESP feels the government should enact.

All of these appeals have been addressed to the secretary-general for consumer and gambling, Rafael Escudero Alday. ADESP seeks additional funding to help support youth sports as well as tackle both gambling-harm and match-fixing in the country, two issues that have drawn attention from the government in 2020.

Significant Compensation Needed

“We ought to receive significant compensation,” said Hidalgo cited in the official release, and reassured that the response from the ministry has been one of strong approval.

Should new taxes or fees be introduced to sports in Spain, ADESP feels confident that the money would be used to offset any potential issues that stem from gambling as well as help bolster sports.

Yet, if experience elsewhere is any indication, ADESP may be trying to secure further money at the expense of businesses that may become unsustainable. In the United Kingdom as well as in Spain, calls to end sports betting sponsorships, which often fund entire teams, have been either voiced or even put into effect.

However, without looking at the exact numbers and making decisions about sustainability, it would be hard to see if the industry can take further taxation. Nevertheless, betting on sports has been doing well in the country, and it’s the biggest gambling vertical according to data published by the Dirección General de Ordenación del Juego (DGOJ).

Spain is in the process of creating a new gambling body intended at harmonizing gambling regulation and bringing clarity for stakeholders in the country.

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