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Trinadad, Tobago lottery phased out

13 August 2007

TRINADAD & TOBAGO -- As reported by the Trinadad and Tobago Newsday: "Moves are being made to phase out the National Lotteries Control Board's (NLCB's) Lottery Classic by as early as October this year, sources in the gaming industry said last week. The decision to phase out the Lottery is expected to be announced in the next Budget.

"...It is as yet unclear whether the latest development has anything to do with government's trend in phasing out gambling in the country, or whether it has to do with declining ticket sales for the Lottery Classic in the face of competition from other NLCB games over the years such as Lotto, PlayWhe, Pick Two and Donsai.

"...Officials at Dundonald Holdings would not divulge any details of the current arrangements with regard to the printing of Lottery Classic tickets. Lottery Classic, regarded as the mother of lottery in Trinidad and Tobago, is a five-digit passive game in which tickets are pre-numbered from 00,000 to 70,000. Numbers are then picked in a fortnightly draw. The Lottery dates back 38 years to February 8, 1969 when the first live fortnightly draw took place on television. The prize for that draw was then $50,000, there were 50,000 tickets printed and tickets were sold at $5 each. Back then there were just 77 agents.

"...Tickets are now sold at $10 ($2 per fraction) and the jackpot is an estimated $100,000. However Sunday Newsday understands that the Classic Lottery has made a consistent loss for the last five years. Prizes also sometimes remain unclaimed..."

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