Betting and Gaming Council Welcomes Labour’s Commitment to Responsible Gambling

The Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) has welcomed Labour’s general election manifesto, which pledges to collaborate with the industry to enhance standards in responsible betting and gaming.

The regulated betting and gaming sector is currently experiencing significant regulatory reforms following the publication of the White Paper in 2023. BGC members are dedicated to implementing the evidence-based, proportionate proposals outlined in the White Paper, aimed at improving standards while ensuring businesses are on a sound regulatory footing.

The proposed reforms, supported by both the BGC and Labour, include a statutory levy to address problem gambling and related harms, the establishment of an Ombudsman to improve consumer redress, frictionless financial risk checks online, new stake limits for online slots, a sports sponsorship code, and essential modernization proposals for the land-based casino sector.

BGC members are recognized as a success story in the British business landscape, contributing to high streets through bookmakers, the leisure and tourism sector via casinos and bingo halls, and leading globally in online betting and gaming technology. The regulated betting and gaming industry in the UK supports 110,000 jobs, generates £4.2 billion in tax revenue, and contributes £7.1 billion to the economy.

Additionally, BGC members provide significant funding to popular sports in the UK. The English Football League and its clubs receive £40 million, horseracing receives £350 million, and snooker, darts, and rugby league receive over £12.5 million.

Approximately 22.5 million adults in Britain engage in betting activities each month, with the most recent NHS Health Survey for England estimating that 0.4% of the adult population are problem gamblers.

Betting and Gaming Council CEO and Acting Chair, Michael Dugher, said: “On behalf of our members, the 110,000 people whose jobs rely on the regulated betting and gaming industry, and the 22.5 million people who enjoy a bet each month, we welcome Labour’s general election manifesto and its commitment to continue working with the industry to further drive up standards.

“BGC members are currently undergoing the biggest regulatory changes in a generation following the publication of the White Paper, which Labour supported, and much of this work will be ongoing after the general election. This is also backed up by the industry’s own significant efforts to continue to drive world-class standards and protections for the vulnerable, which ha transformed the sector in recent years and stands in marked contrast to the dangers posed by the unsafe, unregulated black market online.

“The BGC and our members remain committed to working with the next government to continue to implement change as part of the evidence-based, proportionate, regulatory changes outlined in the White Paper, ensuring those measures get the balance right between protecting the vulnerable, while allowing the vast majority of punters who enjoying betting responsibly to continue doing so without unnecessary intrusion.

“BGC has long treated Labour as not merely the official opposition in parliament, but as a government in waiting. We have worked closely with shadow ministers in recent years and we strongly welcome their commitment in the manifesto to work with the regulated industry. Whatever happens at the polls, our work to drive up standards carries on and we look forward to partnering with the next government in this vitally important work.”

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