The UK Gambling Commission is seeking to bring “greater clarity and transparency” to the calculation of financial penalties through a series of fresh consultations. The 13-week consultations will consider the starting point for fines and whether penalties should be judged against the gross gambling yield (GGY) made during the breach.
Additionally, the consultations will cover financial key event reporting and take into account the complexity of mergers and acquisitions, as well as the increased globalization of gambling.
Kay Roberts, the executive director of operations at the Gambling Commission, emphasized the importance of stakeholders participating in the consultations, stating that all views on proposed changes will be considered.
These consultations are a response to the Gambling Act review white paper, which made proposals on how gambling should be regulated in the UK going forward based on a governmental review of the 2005 Gambling Act.
In line with the commission’s efforts to regulate the gambling sector effectively, it recently launched a confidential reporting service to allow people to report criminal and suspicious activity anonymously. This initiative came after the commission reported a significant surge in land-based gambling, with the sector growing by over 20% in the last year and reaching pre-pandemic levels of business.
The total GGY grew by 6.8% year-on-year to £15.1bn ($19.0bn/€17.5bn) for the 12 months from April 2022 to March 2023, marking a 6.6% increase from the last pre-lockdown period to March 2020.
Furthermore, British charity GambleAware published statistics highlighting online slots as a key issue in gambling-related harm. Over a third of GambleAware’s contacts to its support services in 2022-23 were from people experiencing harm from online slots, followed by internet sports betting and fixed-odds gaming machines in bookmaker shops.
In conclusion, the Gambling Commission’s consultations and initiatives reflect a concerted effort to regulate the gambling sector and address key issues such as financial penalties, reporting services, and the impact of online gambling on individual well-being.