UK Government prohibit non-UK EuroMillions betting


In March 2017, Government published a consultation on a proposal to close the regulatory loophole which allows betting on non-UK EuroMillions.

The responses that we received indicate broad support for this proposal, noting the importance of National Lottery funding to good causes across the UK, and the anomalous position of non-UK EuroMillions in the law.

We intend to introduce a new licence condition to prohibit consumers in Great Britain from placing bets on EuroMillions games which take place outside the UK. This will ensure that these draws receive the same level of protection in relation to funds for good causes raised by The National Lottery as is the case for UK EuroMillions draws.

We are mindful of the effect on impacted businesses, and will tailor the licence condition to ensure it is in line with our aims to reduce consumer confusion, and protect returns to good causes in the UK. Betting operators will still be able to offer bets on international lotteries.

Betting on the outcome of the National Lottery, including the UK EuroMillions game, is prohibited under section 95 of the Gambling Act 2005. Provisions in the Act replace those introduced when the National Lottery was launched in 1994, which amended the Betting, Gaming and Lotteries Act 1963 so that a bookmaker or betting operator which took a bet on the outcome of the National Lottery lost its licence.

EuroMillions was launched in 2004 and the UK was one of its founding participants, along with France and Spain. Nine countries now participate in EuroMillions, and although each country’s game relates back to a single draw held in Paris, the nine games are technically separate. As a result of this technicality, some gambling operators currently offer a bet on the outcome of EuroMillions draws offered abroad (for example, a bet on the outcome of the Spanish EuroMillions draw).

Our view is that this practice runs counter to the spirit and intention of section 95 of the Gambling Act, which seeks to maintain the clear blue water between the National Lottery and commercial gambling products, thereby protecting returns to good causes.

Government ran a consultation from March 6 to May 2 on a proposal to close this regulatory loophole via a licence condition to prohibit betting operators licensed by the Gambling Commission from offering such products.