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Malmö casino 'increased gambling addiction'

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09:35 CEST+02:00
The opening of a state-owned casino in Malmö has contributed to a doubling in the number of gambling addicts in the city, a new report from the Swedish National Institute for Public Health will claim.

The study, which has not yet been released, will show that 3.6 percent of the adult population in the city had gambling problems in 2004, compared with 1.5 percent in 2001.

"The casino has undoubtedly contributed to the increase," Anders Stymne, head of the gambling addiction project at the institute, told Metro. Stymne said that gambling addicts accounted for a large proportion of the casino's income:

"Between 55 and 80 percent of the large bets placed at the Malmö casino are placed by people who are gambling addicts."

The report's results contradict the conclusions of an official inquiry, which concluded that setting up casinos had a negligible impact on increasing gambling addiction.

According to Metro, the institute's report did not record a noticeable change in Sundsvall, where there is also a state-owned casino. In Karlstad, where there is no casino, gambling addiction decreased.

Gothenburg and Stockholm, which both have state-owned casinos, were not included in the survey.

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