New lottery bill to introduce online lottery and sales licenses for vendors

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The Finance Ministry is expected to be able to submit to the cabinet in September a government lottery bill which will empower the Government Lottery Office to introduce, for the first time, online lottery and also will require lottery vendors to have licenses.

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An informed source in the Finance Ministry said that the ministry and the Council of the State had already completed fine-tuning the draft bill which should be ready for submission to the cabinet for consideration in September.

The source said that the main reason for amending the government lottery law was to empower the GLO to introduce new product in addition to the traditional lottery tickets such as online lottery whereby lottery tickets will be available for sale through vending machines or through convenience stores.

In case of online lottery, a condition will be set under which the GLO will be required to send to the state coffers 23 percent of its revenue, to allocate 60 percent of the revenue as prize monies and the rest as management fees for the GLO.

However, the source said that the new government would decide whether online lottery should be introduced and a thorough study will have to be conducted to determine the pros and cons of online lottery.

The bill, said the source, will ban the sale of lottery tickets in school and to people less than 20 years of age. Vendors who overprice the tickets will be liable to one month’s imprisonment and/or a fine of 10,000 baht.

Also, the bill will require vendors to have licenses without which they will be liable to a fine of 10,000 baht and/or a three-month jailterm.

The source explained that this bill was regarded as an important piece of legislation that this government must enact otherwise no elected government would be willing to issue it for fear of public backlash.’

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