The first sets of UK gambling whitepaper consultations have been published, with both the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) and the Department of Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) inaugurating this momentous moment for the UK gambling industry.
These consultations are aimed at turning policy positions outlined in the gambling whitepaper into actionable regulations and effective protections for gamblers.
The consultation’s significance
The UKGC’s executive director for research and policy, Tim Miller, had this to say on the importance of the consultations:
“We are pleased to now focus consultation and engagement on the detail of how such protections and controls can be implemented in practice. Today’s launch is a key moment in turning the commitments in the white paper into reality.”
The UKGC’s consultations
Miller explained that there has already been a significant amount of engagement and scrutiny on the whitepaper’s policy positions signally a healthy sign for the regulatory dialogue to come.
The UKGC’s summer consultations opened on July 26 and will run until October 18th. It covers numerous diverse areas with key factors with affordability checks at the top of the agenda.
The affordability proposals highlighted in the UKGC’s were split into two, covering vulnerability checks and financial risk assessments.
Vulnerability checks cover what is described as a “light touch” customer identification for individuals who are deemed financially vulnerable.
Risk assessments focus on unusually high loss levels and are proposed to be informed primarily by credit reference data.
The DCMS has also launched its own individual public consultations with a particular focus on stake limits for online slot games along with several measures related to the land-based sector.
A maximum stake of £2 to £15 per spin is being considered for players’ protection. As well as this, the DCMS is also exploring greater protections for the 18 -24 demographic, which would include an even lower £2 or £4 stake limit.
The DCMS is also placing an emphasis on relaxing casino rules, altering gaming machine rules in arcades and bingo halls.
The consultation will also include a discussion related to the introduction of cashless payments on gaming machines, the setting of a legal limit of 18 and ensuring adequate funding for licencing authorities.
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