In the United Kingdom and the upcoming ‘white paper’ review of the nation’s gambling laws will reportedly look to target online casino and slot games over fears that these activities are associated with higher rates of addiction.
According to a Tuesday report from the Evening Standard newspaper, this revelation came from the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Tech and the Digital Economy, Chris Philp (pictured), during a committee meeting of the nation’s Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS). The Conservative politician purportedly told his fellow ministers that online casino and slot games ‘worry me the most’ because these are ‘areas where people can get really heavily addicted to gambling.’
Despite a recent raft of ministerial resignations, the government of Prime Minister Boris Johnson is reportedly still preparing to lay out its future vision of the United Kingdom’s online gaming market via the imminent publication of a ‘white paper.’ This long-running exercise could purportedly ultimately result in legislative alterations to the Gambling Act of 2005 potentially encompassing the imposition of maximum online single stake limits and increased affordability checks alongside a complete ban on the use of credit cards.
Philp serves as Member of Parliament for the Croydon South constituency and he reportedly told the committee that online casino and slot games will ‘likely to be targeted’ in the upcoming ‘white paper’ review. The 45-year-old moreover purportedly disclosed that around 40% of the British public regularly enjoys some form of gambling with the National Lottery being the most prominent courtesy of an about 30% participation rate.
Philp reportedly stated…
“The things that worry me the most as we think about the gambling ‘white paper’ are things like online slots and online casinos; the areas where people can get really heavily addicted to gambling. But, that said, we do want to make sure it’s done safely.”
When asked what assessment had been made of the gambling harms associated with draw-based lottery games and Philp reportedly cited a 2018 health survey for England that suggested overall addiction rates stood at about 0.9%. He purportedly then went on to assert that the ratio for instant-win scratchcards was roughly 1.4%, which is ‘considerably lower than for various other activities surveyed where the range went from 2.7% to 12.7%.’
Phil reportedly also told the DCMS committee that the National Lottery, the running of which was recently awarded to the Allwyn UK arm of European lotteries giant Sazka Group, was the country’s most lucrative form of gambling in terms of ‘gross yield’. He purportedly finished by divulging that this enterprise’s annual revenues of approximately £4 billion ($4.8 billion) accounted for one-quarter to one-third of all British gambling receipts.