UKGC Ends Data Consultation, Prepares to Assess Findings

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Following almost two months, the UK Gambling Commission has completed its consultation on gambling data. The regulator will now assess the findings.

UKGC Finalizes Public Consultation for Gambling Data

The UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) is wrapping up a consultation seeking evidence to see what changes the regulator should introduce to better gauge gambling participation in the country. Launched on December 18, 2020, the consultation sought expertise and advice from stakeholders as well as other interested parties.

The consultation specifically asked industry companies to catch it up on how they collect data about gambling participation rates. Today’s the last day of the process. The UKGC said that all data collected will go towards revising Gambling Act 2005.

As a result, the regulator hopes that by calibrating its own methods, it can assist the government in giving the right sort of advice on the review. The review itself has stirred quite a few spirits, pitching ideas such as restricting slot bets and setting loss limits. Slots have been the first to go, with the UKGC taking action earlier in February.

Affordability checks have been a sensitive topic and industry players have cautioned against overregulation. Yet, the Commission remains committed with devising new methods in assessing consumer developments in the industry.

“We, therefore, set out a commitment in our 2020/21 Business Plan to review our approach to measuring participation and prevalence and publish conclusions,” the watchdog said. The commission has relied on trusted entities to collect data so far. Yet, the recent debate about re-regulating gambling has given it a reason to seek further expertise.

A Fraught Market in the UK

According to the UKGC, more needs to be done for the regulator to ensure that reliable information on problem gambling is collected. In the meantime, the number of women problem gamblers has increased.

Last week, problem gamblers sent a joint letter to British bookmakers criticizing them for aggressive advertisement on social media. Yet, there have been those consumers who have argued that over-regulation would be tantamount to depriving individuals of their freedoms.

The industry will have to adapt to new market realities, many of which are likely to resemble the Scandinavian and re-regulated German markets.

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