0

While we are all gripped by El Gordo Christmas lottery fever, soon we could be playing a Euro lottery with a jackpot of £50 million. This week, Spain, Britain and France signed up to the “Euromillion” initiative. Camelot, which runs the National Lottery in the UK has reached a deal with La Francaise des Jeux and Loterias and the Apuestas del Estado here in Spain. The aim is to launch a combined lottery in the first quarter of 2004 and then open it up to other European lottery operators after that, should it continue to grow. Camelot said that the lottery would be a Lotto-type game with a weekly draw on Friday night. The tickets would cost 2 euros (£1.30) and the jackpot amount was expected to be more than 15 million euros (£9.65 million) for each draw. The jackpots could get very much larger than that because, unlike the UK lottery, no limit is planned on the number of times a jackpot can be rolled over. In the UK there is a maximum of three rollovers. In the US where there are usually no such limits, jackpots have in the past totalled more than $150 million (£97.5 million). Camelot said that about 50 per cent of the sales will go towards prizes, with about 12.5 per cent of sales funding the top tier prize level. Twelve prize tiers are planned, with common funding and distribution so that players will receive equivalent prizes in each country. In the meantime, roll on the Christmas and New Year's draws in Spain. editorialUmajorcadailybulletin.es