The flagship project of the Ministry of Consumer Affairs in terms of gaming has a clear objective: the so-called “intensive players”, people who play a high amount of money daily and who Alberto Garzon is going to put boundaries.

These players are intended to be banned from using credit cards and prevented by gaming operators from giving them benefits as gifts or being part of their customer programs.

This is stated in the Royal Decree project that regulates the development of safer environments for gambling that Alberto Garzón’s department has submitted to public information. The authorities will also notify “intensive players” of their condition through a “specific and differentiated” informative message.

“This message, which will be formulated in terms that are understandable to an average consumer, will contain information about the participant’s relationship with the game, and must include, at least, data such as the average amount of deposits, the connection time or accumulated losses”, explains the standard.

The message will repeat monthly and will summarize the player’s activity over the previous 30 days. The objective, explains the rule, is for the player to be aware of his circumstances.

an intensive player

According to the regulation of the Ministry of Consumption, an “intensive player” is considered to be an adult over 25 years of age who has exceeded 50% of the daily or weekly deposit limit provided for in Annex II of Royal Decree 1614/2011, of November 14, for three consecutive periods of time. In the case of those under 25, the reference limit will be 25% in two consecutive periods.

That is to say, those under 25 years of age who have spent 150 euros for two days in a row (300 euros) in games of chance, or 375 for two weeks, are considered “intensive” players. In the case of adults, the amounts go up to 300 euros a day for three days or 750 for three weeks in a row.

Evolution of gaming operator margins. Source: Ministry of Labor.


Alberto Garzón’s project is presented as an attempt to stop what is considered “risky” behaviors in the game, to avoid addiction to those people who manifest a problematic attitude towards the game or suffer from a gambling disorder, or who are in the early stages of this type of behavior.

To this end, the standard establishes that when an operator detects a gambler with risk behaviortake responsibility for taking action and put actions in place to stop this behavior.

According to the text, the operator must exclude this profile of people from all its promotions or gifts, eliminate the use of credit cards and delete their data from all those lists created for advertising activities. In short, a risk player cannot receive emails from any operator to play again.

Another of Garzón’s challenges is to stop the expansion of this type of game among youths (under 25 years). For this reason, the regulation specifies that these users will receive a message that highlights the risks of gambling at an early age and they will be prohibited from receiving gifts or compensation from bookmakers.

This is the second trick that the Minister of Consumption will play against the game online after the first one has not reported great successes: the limitation of ads in advertising spaces. As Invertia announced, during the year 2020 the gaming sector online earned 25% more and the number of players rose 8%.

65% play

According to the latest data provided by Consumo, in 2020 the business of companies in the gaming sector increased to 851 million, 14% more than in the previous exercise.

The data was seen improved by the Covid-19 and it is that, according to the experts, the confinements generated by the pandemic have caused that all forms of gambling and betting online have increased.

It must be remembered that the betting business over the Internet, which includes sports betting, is the one that represents the most income. In the last quarter of 2020, generated more than 231 million euros. This figure represents an increase compared to the third quarter of 25% and 18% compared to the same period of 2019.

According to the latest edition of the “Report on Behavioral Addictions” of the Ministry of Health, which was released in April, face-to-face gambling and online It is increasingly widespread in the population between 15 and 64 years of age.. Between 2019 and 2020, 64.2% of this population sector has gambled with money. Something that, now, Garzón tries to tackle.


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