The Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) has criticised the Social Market Foundation (SMF)‘s suggestion that players in the UK should be subjected to monthly deposit limits of £100.
A report released by the SMF yesterday revealed numerous suggestions to improve the integrity of gambling in the country.
The replacement of the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) was recommended in addition to the deposit limits, as were other practices.
Suggested monthly limits wouldn’t necessarily apply to everyone, but affordability checks would need to be passed before more funds could be deposited.
“Arbitrary and random”
When the 2005 Gambling Act is reviewed by the government – as has been promised – the BGC believes that all changes should be reasoned from evidence. However, it argued that the deposit caps did not fit this criteria.
Warning that implementing measures without concrete evidence could be detrimental to the UK’s gambling industry, the BGC said the following.
“Some 30 million people enjoy an occasional bet, whether that’s on the Lottery, bingo or sports and gaming, and the overwhelming majority of them do so perfectly safely. We already carry out robust and improved affordability checks, and regularly intervene on customers to ensure they gamble within their means.
“We disagree with the suggestion of an arbitrary and random low cap on spending and can think of no other area of the economy where the government determines how much an individual can spend.”
The BGC also continued with the below.
“We must avoid measures that see safe regulated betting being driven to unregulated, offshore, illegal black market operators online who don’t have the same checks, interventions and high standards that apply to regulated BGC members.
“Measures must be proportionate, evidence-led and fully thought through so as not to jeopardise the 100,000 jobs the industry supports or the over £3 billion in tax revenues it generates for the Exchequer.”
SMF report has a number of suggestions
Along with the proposed monthly deposit limit, which is designed to protect lower-income households, the SMF had a variety of other suggestions.
It wants the white label system removed completely, along with slot games in the country to have a mandatory stake limit of between £1 and £5. Moreover, the SMF believes that the UKGC should be replaced with two separate governing bodies. The first would handle licensing and compliance, with the other focusing on player safety and related topics.
The report was also critical of offshore operators who have been allowed to advertise themselves in the UK, while having different tax obligations at the same time.