Sat, Jul 15, 2006 - Page 20 News List

Premier approves sports lotto

DPA , TAIPEI

Taiwan will launch a sports lottery either next year or in 2008 to raise money to promote sports, a Chinese-language newspaper reported yesterday.

After being briefed by sports officials, Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) on Thursday gave the go-ahead to launch the sports lotto after September next year, the Apple Daily reported.

Su instructed officials to study other countries' sports lotteries, make thorough preparations and launch the lotto at the appropriate time.

The National Council on Physical Fitness and Sports submitted to the Ministry of Finance the criteria for selecting a software firm to design the lotto's software and a banking organization to issue payouts, and they are expected to be announced before the end of the year. Qualified parties can apply after selection criteria are announced. The lottery could be launched in September next year at the earliest, the paper quoted a council official as saying.

It is hoped that the lottery will help curb illegal gambling on local baseball games and generate money to support sports activities.

National Treasury Agency Director Liu Teng-cheng (劉燈城) said last year that a sports lotto would use results from internationally recognized sporting events at home and abroad, such as the NBA, Taiwan's baseball league and other sports.

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