Although the Italian prime minister passed a decree on March 11, imposing on all kiosk owners to temporarily put their gaming machines out of service, not everyone seems to be abiding by this requirement.
In a press statement by the regional government of Lombardy, health official Stefano Bolognini explains:
We have found that within some establishments, particularly kiosks, gaming activity on gaming machines continues to be perceived despite the corona virus. Apart from the danger that this poses within closed rooms, this is a clear violation of the decree issued by the President.
While there appears to be a lack of law enforcement to actually ban the currently prohibited gambling activities, Lombardy once again appeals to people’s sense of solidarity.
Not only should citizens limit their purchases to the bare minimum, such as not buying gambling products in kiosks, but also report a violation of the decree to the local police if one is observed.
State gambling products are not yet paused
Unlike in Spain, the sale of state-owned gaming products, i.e. lottery tickets and scratch cards, is still permitted for the time being. Cities, including Siena and Brescia, have only temporarily banned the sale of scratch cards.
There are various legal lottery products in Italy. In addition to the state lottery “Lotteria Italia”, the lottery game “SuperEnalotto”, operated by the Milanese gaming company SISAL, is very popular with the Italians. This is a 6 out of 90 lottery, which already pays out at two correct prizes.
However, the national lottery draws have not yet been interrupted. Lottery tickets can continue to be purchased as usual in kiosks and prizes can be collected.
Superenalotto also runs its draws three times a week as usual. Basically, however, all players are encouraged to prefer to purchase the online products.
It remains to be seen whether online gambling in Italy will continue to benefit from the nationwide quarantine.