Austrialia To Review Online Gambling Rules
Australian authorities have announced that they plan to seriously overhaul the country’s gambling sector in a bid to stem the annual $700 million AUD bet by residents on overseas poker and gaming sites.
Although the country allows players to wager online on horse racing and sports betting, current legislation forbids local organisations from setting up online gaming operations which include poker, roulette or any other form of casino game.
However, a recent study conducted by independent research and advisory body the Productivity Commission has strongly recommended that restrictions on the online gaming industry should be relaxed to allow the sector to be better regulated.
The report noted that despite the current restrictions in place on domestic operators, the Australian government had little power to ban foreign suppliers, meaning that online punters were being driven into the hands of potentially unregulated operations.
“In its unregulated form, online gaming is available 24 hours a day, allows credit betting, has no intrinsic restrictions on bet sizes, has no capacity for venue staff to observe and assist people in trouble, reaches new groups of people who may be vulnerable to the medium (including the underage) and may not have any regulatory oversight to ensure probity,” the commission’s report noted.
It concluded that the current ban on local suppliers had hindered the development of the industry in Australia and that an opening up of the sector would increase competition and ensure a better, safer online service for the consumer as well as generating additional yearly tax revenue for the government.