Norway's Minister of Culture and Churches, Trond Griske has introduced new regulations on gambling machines that will limit how much a player can bet per game, how long they can play and how much they can lose per day or month, making the country's gambling laws some of the strictest on the planet.
The government claims it is concerned about increasing reports of compulsive gambling in Norway, and last year completely banned ordinary one-armed bandits. Instead, new video machines will be remotely controlled by the state monopolised lottery company and will not take cash or credit cards, operated only by prepaid electronic cards sold by the Norske Tipping and registered in the name of specific players.
Griske has made the headlines before with his ideas on controlling Internet gambling in Norway, proposing a UIGEA-like solution of forbidding financial transactions with online gambling companies. Such a protectionist move would be welcomed by state gambling monopoly Norske Tipping, although it flies in the face of the trend in Europe to comply with EU principles of free movement of trade and services between EU member states.