Adverts for betting on horse racing are to be allowed on TV and radio following approval of new competition guidelines by the Broadcasting Authority yesterday.
Broadcasters will be able to run adverts for horse-race betting at any time except between 4pm and 8.30pm and during children's programmes. The adverts must only target adults and must not 'unduly exhort the public to bet' or mislead them on the likelihood of winning.
Legislator Albert Cheng King-hon, who chairs the Legislative Council's panel on broadcasting, culture and sport, said: 'Any relaxation at this point is not warranted ... Lots of people, including teenagers, will be able to see the advertisements and you are going to introduce a lot of new clients to betting. It could lead to greater indebtedness in society.'
The move is one of several measures being introduced to update competition guidelines for broadcasters, which aim to deal with anti-competitive conduct in the industry.
A 10-minute minimum period between TV adverts was also scrapped and replaced with a seven-minute minimum for ads screened during dramas and feature films. There are no limits during other programmes.