According to new research commissioned by the Lithuanian Gambling Supervisory Authority, online gambling participation rates in Lithuania nearly doubled between 2017 and 2019, but the total number of people gambling in the country declined.
Market research firm Vilmorus conducted the study under the guidance of both the national regulator and the Ministry of Finance of Lithuania, addressing a total of 1,001 people across the nation.
Research found that 10 percent of those participating in the survey had been gambling, down from 13 percent in 2017 when a similar study was conducted. The survey found that people aged 29 and under were more likely to gamble than older participants.
With this overall decliner, the survey observed a substantial increase in the number of people playing online, rising from a 16 percent share in the new study in 2017 to 30%.
This rise reflects figures released by the Ministry of Finance in August that showed online gambling revenue in the Lithuanian sector in the first six months of 2019 increased by 41.8 percent to € 17.5 m (£ 15.2m/$19.4 m).
Other survey results included 71 percent of respondents who said that ads had an impact on their decision to play, down slightly from 74 percent in 2017. This is expected to change in the coming years with the government approving new legislation to enforce more strict gambling marketing controls.
The study also reflected a greater understanding of problem gambling, with 66 percent of respondents indicating that they were aware of being able to opt out of gambling, up from 61 percent two years ago.
To date, 10,347 applications from players have been submitted by the supervisory authority to limit their access to gambling. Of those who were self-excluded, 94% were men and only 6% were female, with the majority for applications submitted by people between the ages of 18 and 40.
At the same time, underage gambling is declining in the country, with as of 2017, the number of minors trying to access gambling services is down by 5%.