The Gambling Commission has warned local authorities about the amount of betting agencies in Belgian towns. “Bookmakers are too accessible, checks on minor gamblers are too lax, and the sector is spreading. This includes slot machines”, says the president of the Commission, Etienne Marique. He was quoted by L’Echo and De Tijd on Wednesday. In Belgium, the rules say betting agencies must be at least a kilometre away from each other, but the Commission has warned of a new trend that bypasses this rule: false newsagents.
“On the outside, it looks like a newsagent’s, but when you go in it’s clearly a betting agency”, explains Peter Naessens, General Director of the Gambling Commission.
At the moment, there are 614 betting agencies in Belgium. The maximum number has been set at 1,000.