Revamped “Liste Sport” in France: Balancing Betting Innovation and Integrity
On January 15, 2024, the French National Gambling Authority (ANJ) announced a substantial revision to the ‘Liste Sport,’ the authorized list of sports betting supports in France.
This reform, implemented to improve clarity, consistency, and relevance, carefully balances bettors’ and operators’ expectations with the need to prevent sports manipulations.
Understanding ‘Liste Sport’
‘Liste Sport’ governs the ANJ-approved sports betting offerings in France. Its primary objectives are to prevent sports manipulations, prohibit bets unrelated to sporting knowledge (like a player’s sock color or odd/even goals), and limit bets to certain competitions.
Since its inception in 2010, ‘Liste Sport’ has undergone several changes, leading to complexity and inconsistency. The overhaul resulted from extensive consultations with stakeholders, including sports ministries, professional leagues, and betting operators.
Key Changes to Competitions and Events
The updated list sees the removal of 179 competitions, including those no longer existing, lacking in stakes or notoriety, or susceptible to manipulations. Notably, only the NCAA’s March Madness basketball tournament remains, addressing recent manipulation risks. Restrictions on non-competitive matches have been lifted in several sports, expanding betting options.
The types of results and game phases suitable for betting have been consolidated into broader categories for operational ease. This includes allowing basketball bets on any player scoring and lifting the tennis handicap betting ban.
The Core Principles Remain Unchanged
Despite these changes, the foundational principles of ‘Liste Sport’ stay intact. Bets must still focus on sports-related events, negative actions remain off-limits, and results must align with official announcements by event organizers.
The revised ‘Liste Sport’ takes effect on March 1, 2024. A comprehensive evaluation is planned by year-end, in consultation with all involved parties.
Our Comment on the Article
This reform of ‘Liste Sport’ represents a significant stride in France’s sports betting landscape. By updating and streamlining the list, the ANJ has struck a delicate balance between innovation and the integrity of sports betting.
This reflects a proactive approach to evolving market demands while ensuring the highest standards of sports betting ethics and fairness. The ongoing dialogue with stakeholders exemplifies a collaborative effort to shape a responsible and dynamic betting environment in France.