The edition of July 2023 of the leading Latvian sports journal covers this matter of bet ads and sports vs. betting company sponsorship and ads in Latvia.
Last time we looked at this matter in 2019, when there was still some relatively fresh case law and court practice. In recent years we could not find any court cases at all.
In theory, the Law prohibits ads of betting, and any gambling in general. In Latvia there are 3 authorities that are supposed to watch ads or betting company operations. There is no publicly available information as to their activities recently, possibly we have just missed that.
What cannot be missed is the coincidence that donations to “public benefit organizations” offers a tax discount, and some betting companies have donated to sports federations, which by the way put their names on the national league title.
So now we have “Latvian championship in whatever-ball” titled “Betting-company’s Latvian League in whatever-ball.
The betting companies making donations only receive such recognition.
The Lawmaker should decide, is it fair to keep the prohibition unenforced, making some sports federations (more hungry for money and bigger risk appetite) in more favorable situation compared to those who just want to operate in compliance with the Law.
By enforcing the prohibition, the sports would be left without some income. In the article we look at some exact numbers of how much exactly the betting business has offered to the major federations.
By changing the law and allowing betting ads, the law abiding citizens would be enabled to compete for the euros of betting companies.
The usual argument is that “sponsoring” is not an ad, no matter if the sponsor’s name is kept private or printed on all headlines and headings.