A total of 399,750 Cypriots above the age of 15, or 75% of the total number of Cypriots aged over 15, are involved in gambling activities, according to a survey by the National Betting Authority (NBA).
The study shows showed that 6% or 23,985 of these people fall in the category of problematic/pathological players, while the average age of Cypriots who try gambling for the first time is twelve and a half.
The results of the first quantitative survey in Cyprus on the attitude and characteristics of gamblers, carried out by research company IMR on behalf of NBA, were presented at a press conference at the Ministry of Finance on Monday.
Who are the gamblers
The aim was to record the extent to which Cypriots participate in gambling, identify how many of them are problematic gamblers, study their social and demographic characteristics along with the frequency and habits of gambling, their budget and their actual expenditure.
According to the survey, presented by IMR CEO Christina Kokkalou, 75% of Cypriots above the age of 15 gamble at some point in their life. This translates to a total of 399,750, of whom 81% are “out of risk” gamblers, 13% are considered as players with possible problematic behaviour and 6% are described as pathological/problematic gamblers.
85% of the participants believe the state should strengthen its role regarding gambling regulations
The survey also shows that the average age of Cypriots who start to gamble is 12.5 years. According to IMR CEO, 31% of the participants stated that when they gambled for the first time they were accompanied by their father, 22% by friends, 19% by their mother, 12% went by themselves, 8% by their siblings, 5% by their grandfather and 3% by some other relative.
Moreover the survey shows that 85% of the participants believe that the state should strengthen its role as far as gambling regulations are concerned.
Calling for a national prpgramme
NBA President Ioanna Fiakkou called on all stakeholders involved to respond in a positive way to NBA’s support for adopting a common National Strategy on gambling.
“Through coordinated efforts on the basis of a common National Strategy, our common goals, short-term and long-term, will be implemented effectively and on time” she said.