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Image of Commission Executive Director Tim Miller along with the title of the blog post

Looking forward to our second round of Gambling Act Review consultations

Our Executive Director of Research and Policy Tim Miller talks through plans for the second round of Gambling Act Review consultations.

Posted 15 November 2023 by Tim Miller

A little over six months ago, the Government published its Gambling Act Review White Paper (opens in new tab).

Our focus on implementing its recommendations means we have made considerable progress in that short space of time.

We published four Gambling Act Review consultations in July:

  • age verification in premises

  • remote games design – building on our earlier work on online slots, we consulted on similar protections for other online casino games

  • direct marketing and cross-selling – we want consumers to have more control over the direct marketing they receive

  • financial risk and vulnerability checks for remote operators.

Those consultations closed in October, and we welcome the broad engagement these topics received. We are currently analysing the responses.

Our forthcoming consultations will continue to fulfil our aim to progress White Paper recommendations at pace, but also address other aspects of our regulation to make us fit for the future. We intend to consult on the following seven topics in the coming weeks:

  • socially responsible incentives – we will consult on proposals relating to incentives such as free bets and bonuses, to make sure they do not encourage harmful or excessive gambling

  • customer-led tools – we will consult on proposals to empower consumers and make it easier for them to manage their gambling in ways that work for them, such as deposit limits

  • transparency of protection of customer funds – we will consult on proposals to increase transparency to consumers if their funds are held by licensees that offer no protection in the event of insolvency

  • requirement to make annual financial contributions to Research, Prevention and Treatment - we will consult on removing the existing requirement to contribute to a set list of research, prevention and treatment bodies in the context of Government proposals to introduce a statutory levy in the future

  • regulatory data – as explained in Ben Haden's making better use of operator data blog, we will be consulting on increasing the frequency of reporting for many licensees from annual to quarterly

  • financial penalties – our enforcement activity has ramped up in recent years and we are proposing changes to the way in which we calculate the penal element of financial penalties imposed following a breach. Our proposals will seek to bring greater clarity and transparency to the way we calculate such penalties. This will include measures to ensure that penalties are set at a level where the costs of non-compliance outweigh the costs of compliance

  • financial key event reporting – we propose to amend our rules so that licensees provide us with relevant information about their finances and interests, enabling us to strengthen our risk-based approach to regulation. This is particularly important given the changes seen in the sector over recent times, particularly the increase in complexity of mergers and acquisitions and the globalisation of gambling.

These consultations will last for 12 weeks, with expected closing dates to be in February-March.

We also continue to support our sponsoring department, Department for Culture, Media and Sport, with its work to implement the Gambling Act Review, and will continue to do so as Government considers the outcomes of their recent and current consultations on stake limits for online slots, land-based measures and the introduction of a statutory levy.

We are rightly putting emphasis on implementing the Government’s Gambling Act Review recommendations. This goes hand in hand with our vital regulatory ‘business as usual’, to keep gambling safe, fair and crime free.

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