In October, a study into problem gambling found that one in 30 adults in Ireland suffered from negative experiences associated with betting.
The Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) paper found that problem gamblers were each spending an average of more than €1,000 a month on gambling.
A new survey by Ireland Thinks on behalf of lotto betting operator Lottoland, found that 74pc of those surveyed are in support of the Government’s plans to introduce greater regulation of the gambling sector.
It also highlighted that 64pc believe people should be “free to gamble responsibly.”
It comes as the Government’s Gambling Regulation Bill 2022, which proposes a radical overhaul of the law on gambling in Ireland, enters the final stage of the legislative process.
The legislation paves the way for the establishment of a gambling regulator focused on “public safety” and “well-being” covering gambling online and in person.
The regulator will also have the power to regulate advertising, gambling websites and apps.
Lottoland said it is urging Minister James Browne and the Regulator designate to “re-engage with industry experts and listen to their concerns.”
It says that the new laws suffer from “an absence of clear and robust definitions” and if passed, would have “unintended consequences” stemming from a range of legal issues.
Vice President of Lottoland UK and Ireland, Mike Kirwan said that the organisation recognises the overarching objectives of the Bill to regulate the gambling sector for the first time.
He also said it recognises its intention to establish robust regulatory oversight and accountability in the Gambling Regulatory Authority of Ireland (GRAI).
“Lottoland remain firmly committed to the development and adoption of a comprehensive, evidence-based legislative framework for the gambling, betting, and lotteries sector in Ireland.
“But we also believe that what is set in legislation now will be vital to ensuring an effective, agile, and sustainable framework in the longer term – whilst still providing for an enjoyable yet safer gambling experience for all customers,” he said.
The Ireland thinks survey also found that of those that currently bet in Ireland, almost one-fifth (19pc) would seek alternative methods of gambling in the event that gambling is restricted in Ireland.
A previous PWC analysis found that the UK, France, Italy, Spain, Denmark, Norway and Sweden have all seen growth in the black market, with growth of between 20pc to 66pc of all bets staked with black market providers.
Mr Kirwan stressed that the results of the poll demonstrate that the Irish public are in favour of a sensible approach to the regulation of the betting sector, which he said sees increased regulation and harm reduction, without coming at the cost of individual’s ability to bet responsibly.
“We therefore urge Minister Browne to re-engage with our sector, to listen to our concerns and to ensure that this piece of legislation contains clear and robust definitions, which works to effectively protect consumers,” he added.