The European Gaming Commission has warned that global gambling revenues could be set to drop 11 per cent from previous forecasts due to global concerns about the coronavirus.

2020 global gambling gross win has been downgraded from its previous pre-COVID-19 forecasts of $473bn to $421bn, representing figures close to 2016 levels, according to industry analysts H2 Gambling Capital’s new weekly COVID Impact Tracker.

The company asserts an expectation that worldwide online activity is set to surge, with the sector shifting from 13.2 per cent to a 15.7 per cent share of global gambling revenue. 

H2 Gambling Capital comments that the unprecedented shutdown of major sports events across the globe will inevitably have a significant hit on overall revenues across the entire gambling sector, both offline and online.

Currently major sports events suspended or cancelled due to the virus include a variety of European football league, including the English Premier League, Spain’s La Liga, Germany’s Bundesliga, as well as the European Champions League, The Masters golf major, and the UK’s Grand National – all billed as major events for European bookmakers.

In 2018, EGBA members generated €2.36bn in online sports betting revenue, accounting for 44 per cent of their total online gambling revenues.

“It’s sad that so many iconic sporting events are being cancelled or suspended and it will obviously have a negative impact on our sector,” explained Maarten Haijer, Secretary General of the European Gaming and Betting Association

“But the safety and health of the public is obviously more important and we fully support the sporting authorities and others in the difficult decisions they face right now.”