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Sir

Your article of 18 February, ‘How Labour unleashed fixed odds free-for-all’ warrants a response.

The article suggests that the Gambling Commission could have done more to take action against Fixed Odd Betting Terminals (FOBTs).   

Whilst we can and do regulate some aspects of machine play such as speed of play, legislatively we are unable to regulate the number of machines, the place where machines are sited, and the size of stake or prize.

Our view on FOBTs is very clear.

Tackling the harm caused by gambling without unduly restricting the freedom of responsible adults to choose how they spend their leisure time and money is a serious challenge.

We need a more sophisticated approach that combines controls on products with active steps to identify people experiencing harm or who are at risk and intervening effectively to prevent it.

Sarah Harrison
Chief Executive

Notes to editors 

  1. More information about how we regulate the gambling industry.
  2. Useful statistics on the gambling industry
  3. More information on prevention of money-laundering.

Journalists can contact our press office on 0121 230 6700 or email: communications@gamblingcommission.gov.uk

Posted on 22 February 2016