Lords Report Could Reduce Gambling Profits by £974 Million
A report put together for Peers for Gambling Reform and carried out by Nera Economic Consulting has found that the reforms suggested by the Peers could reduce industry profits by as much as £974 million. However, it also found that the reforms would increase tax revenues and funding for research, education and treatment.
In July 2020, Peers for Gambling Reform published a report titled “Gambling Harm – Time for Action”. It put forward a number of suggested reforms to gambling regulation, such as bet limits on iGaming products, a standardization of play speed across physical and digital products, and the introduction of affordability checks.
However, it has now been found that these reforms would reduce industry profits by between £696 million and £974 million each year.
The Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) has heavily criticized the latest report with chief executive Michael Dugher saying that the assessments are “economically daft” and the work of “prohibitionists.”
Speaking this week Dugher said that the BGC welcomes the government gambling review and is confident that Ministers will make sensible choices regarding gambling based upon “serious evidence” rather than the “fantasy figures” in the new report.
The dream of anti-gambling prohibitionists has always been to somehow force people not to gamble or to gamble less, just because they don’t like betting. A minority of peers may look down their noses at the millions of working people who enjoy a bet, but the truth is that the overwhelming majority do so perfectly safely. And the idea that somehow restricting betting would create more jobs is economically daft and frankly for the birds.
The Peers for Gambling Reform’s report also suggested a ban on gambling operators directly sponsoring sports, which Dugher believes will simply send people to the black market.
However, while critical of the report, Dugher has said that he hopes it will lead to some constructive reform of the industry. He also pointed out that members of the BGC are spending £100 million on research, education and treatment of problem gambling.