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Velimir Velichkov January 5, 2023 2 min read
UK Needs to Save Its Gambling Industry, Says John Spellar MP
Amid the ongoing concerns about the outcome of the Gambling Act review in the UK, a Labour Party MP urged the government to carefully consider the changes and protect the billion-dollar gambling industry in the country
John Spellar, a Labour Party MP recently wrote for the Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) in light of the ongoing government review of the main gambling law in the country. In a report released by The House, the MP urged the government to implement measures that will protect the flourishing British gambling industry.
Sensible and Proportionate Changes Are Needed
According to Spellar, the review of the Gambling Act and the consequent changes should be “sensible and proportionate.” He rejected proposals that call for blanket affordability checks for low-level spending claiming that such measures can only increase the share of the black market in the UK. Moreover, Spellar stressed that such a shift can be devastating for customers, considering that black market operators do not adhere to any of the rules that are already established within the regulated market.
An important point raised by Spellar pointed to evidence about the impact of tough gambling regulation. He explained that European countries that have pushed changes such as blanket affordability checks and strict advertising are already seeing an uptick in the share of illegal operators. Focusing on examples, Spellar said that in Italy, some 23% of the market represents illegal offerings, while in France and Norway, the black market has an even larger share of 57% and 66% respectively.
The Gambling Industry Boosts the Economy, Supports Jobs
Looking at the British gambling industry, the MP cited research from EY, which confirms that the industry supports more than 110,000 jobs and at the same time annually contributes £7.1 billion to the economy and delivers £4.2 billion in taxes. According to him, a positive example of the “British success stories” within the sector includes Bet365. Spellar pointed out that the company currently employs more than 4,500 people in Stoke-on-Trent, making it the largest private-sector employer in the region.
“A new report from EY has shown that the betting and gaming industry is a Great British success story. An industry that is expanding overseas while investing in high tech, high skilled jobs in the UK,“wrote John Spellar MP
When it comes to problem gambling, the MP reiterated research results that the rate of problem gambling in the country stands at 0.3%, which is significantly low when compared to Europe. Moreover, Spellar pointed out that some 22.5 million adults enjoy gambling activities responsibly every month.
William Velichkov is a research-driven writer. His strengths lie in ensuring factual accuracy, vetting government documentation and reaching out to regulators and other officials. He is particularly fond of financial reporting, the sports betting industry, B2B partnerships and esports betting developments. William is a strong asset to the GamblingNews team as he adds a bedrock to our reporting.
Industry January 5, 2023