‘Reformer’s shopping list’: gambling laws review starts next week | Gambling

A wide-ranging review of gambling laws to be launched next week will consider banning sports sponsorship and limiting online casino stakes among a “reformer’s shopping list” of proposals to overhaul gambling laws, the Guardian can reveal.

The long-awaited review, which could roll back vast swathes of the Gambling Act 2005, will begin as soon as Monday with an initial call for evidence.

Terms of reference will be published at the same time, offering the first insight into what is in store for the gambling industry as well as campaigners calling for tougher regulation.

Amid mounting concern about gambling’s role in wider society, changes under consideration will include:

  • Limits on online stakes, prizes and “spin speeds”.

  • Tough affordability checks.

  • A testing regime for new products.

  • A sports sponsorship ban.

  • New powers to tackle the parallel market.

  • Legal redress for wronged punters.

  • A mandatory levy to fund addiction treatment.

The broad scope is likely to be welcomed by advocates for tighter regulation, including people recovering from problem gambling and more than 50 MPs and and peers who have backed stricter controls. But the prospect of a much harsher regulatory climate will concern online casino bosses and bookmakers.

Multiple sources said officials at the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), which is leading the process, would take aim at almost every area of gambling law, in what one insider termed a “reformer’s shopping list”.

One key area in their sights is regulation of online casino and electronic slot machine games. Gamblers can bet unlimited amounts online, even though some internet-based games such as roulette are no different from those that were available on fixed-odds betting terminals, whose maximum stake was cut from £100 to £2.

Alongside new maximum stakes, prizes could be curbed and the speed of play limited.

Ministers will consider whether firms should be forced to limit players’ monthly losses and perform stricter affordability checks to ensure people are gambling within their means. They will also look at mandating a “single customer view” policy, where multiple firms pool information about potentially vulnerable customers.

It follows a string of high-profile incidents in which problem gamblers were left destitute after losing large sums of money.

Under proposals to be weighed up by the DMCS, new gambling products could also be subjected to a rigorous testing regime that would determine whether they are released on to the market and how much can be wagered on them. So-called “white label” operations, where overseas firms can buy access to the UK market via a local company, will also be examined.

The UK gambling industry’s lobby group, the Betting and Gaming Council (BGC), has repeatedly said tightening the regulations too far could fuel parallel market betting operations that have a scant regard for customer safety. But the DCMS will consider giving the regulator, the Gambling Commission, which has admitted it is underfunded, extra financial resources and new powers to tackle illicit operators.

Sources said the review would also consider marketing and advertising, including the possibility of new measures to curb sports sponsorship – including logos on football club shirts – in an apparent response to the “gamblification” of football.

Promotional offers are also expected to form part of the review’s scope, indicating that the government is not satisfied with efforts by the industry and the Gambling Commission to address VIP schemes, bonuses and so-called “free bets”.

VIP schemes, in which losing gamblers are wined, dined and given financial incentives to keep betting, have been a common feature of stories about problem gamblers who resorted to crime or took their own lives.

DCMS will consider making the existing levy system that funds addiction treatment mandatory. But the department is not expected to take on the much-criticised lack of funding for treatment of gambling addiction, indicating that this will be left to the Department of Health and Social Care.

The sports minister, Nigel Huddleston, will oversee the review but Boris Johnson is understood to be keen on dialling back the Blair-era legislation that spawned the modern UK gambling industry.

Senior officials in Downing Street are also believed to see gambling reform as a vote-winner, as well as the right thing to do. “The PM just sees it as people being exploited and it’s not him,” one MP with knowledge of No 10’s thinking said earlier this year.

A BGC spokesperson said: “It is important that the review is evidence-led and strikes the right balance between protecting the vulnerable, while not spoiling the enjoyment of the estimated 30 million people who enjoy a bet at least once a month – the vast majority of whom do so perfectly safely – and driving them into the arms of the unregulated online black market.”

Source link

46 thoughts on “‘Reformer’s shopping list’: gambling laws review starts next week | Gambling

  1. I’m really impressed together with your writing talents and also with the layout on your blog. Is that this a paid subject matter or did you modify it your self? Either way stay up the nice quality writing, it is

  2. Took me time to read all the comments, but I really enjoyed the article. It proved to be Very helpful to me and I am sure to all the commenters here! It’s always nice when you can not only be informed, but also entertained!

  3. I like your blog,I sincerely hope that your blog a rapid increase in traffic density,which help promote your blog and we hope that your blog is being updated.

  4. the idea was a wonderful chance to pay a visit to this kind of web site and My spouse and i am cheerful to know. thank you so much with regard to giving us a new chance to have this prospect.

  5. This is very informative content material and written well so to speak. It can nice to see of which some people still recognize the way to write the high quality article.!

  6. I am really impressed together using your creating talents and also with the format on your blog. Is of which this a paid for subject matter matter or did you modify it your personal? Sometimes means stay up typically the nice excellent writing, this is

  7. We like your blog, We sincerely hope that your website a new rapid increase in traffic occurrence, which help advertise your blog and all of us desire that your blogging site is being kept up to date.

  8. it’s definitely nice and even meanful. it’s really nice blog. Linking is quite useful thing. you could have genuinely made it easier for lots of persons which visit blog and provide them usefull details.

  9. Heya, this time is also much beneficial to myself, since this kind of time I am looking at this enormous informative article below at my home. Cheers for massive hard function.

  10. Thanks a lot because a person have been willing to help show information with you. we will often love all you have carried out below because I know you are incredibly troubled with our

  11. Got me the perfect time to read most the comments, nevertheless I actually really enjoyed the document. This proved to end up being Very valuable for me together with We am sure to everyone the commenters here! It is very always nice when anyone can not just be educated, but also entertained!

  12. it’s actually nice plus meanful. it’s really great blog. Linking is incredibly useful point. you might have definitely aided lots of men and women which visit blog and supply them usefull info.

  13. Required me the perfect time to read most the comments, nevertheless My spouse and i really enjoyed the post. This proved to always be Very helpful to me and I actually am sure to any or all the commenters here! It may be always nice when an individual can not just be advised, but also entertained!

  14. Anyone produced such the fascinating part to read, giving just about every subject enlightenment for individuals to get knowledge. Thanks intended for sharing the such details with us to see this specific.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *