Australian online gambling market to remain closed to new legal betting avenues


Communications Minister, Stephen Conroy has confirmed the rumors that the  Australian online gambling market is to remain closed to new legal betting avenues. He cited lack of consumer protection as the main reason why Australia will not open up to new betting avenues or to foreign offshore gambling sites.


This dealt a blow to the bookies who through The Wagering Association of Australia had proposed that in-play betting be allowed in Australian sports betting. In-play betting is the ability to bet on a game via the internet while it has already started. Micro-betting has also been banned by the Federal Government. Micro-betting which is very popular at European online gambling sites, is the act of betting on an individual point in badminton or tennis or betting for a goal to be scored in a particular half by a particular player in football. Furthermore, the proposed 5 year trial for online casino games like slots, roulette, blackjack and poker has also been cancelled.


Online casino games are banned in Australia, however it is reported that Australians spend over $1 billion dollars a year betting at 2200 ‘illegal’ offshore online casinos, sports books and poker sites.


Senator Conroy has said his consumer and harm minimization strategy would include having players set deposit limits and set how much they are willing to lose prior to beginning to play. Players would have access to a national exclusion register which will allow them to exclude themselves from playing at multiple sites. It has been proposed that stricter rules around lines of credit be enforced as well as clamping down on advertising which entices players to bet at offshore online gambling sites. Players will also have access to their gambling data allowing them to track their losses as well as have access to a warning system which will alert them if they are becoming problem gamblers.


On opening up Australia to offshore online gambling companies, Senator Conroy  said enforcing Australia’s laws on offshore gambling sites would be challenging and that the main focus now was setting up a  national standard of gambling laws which will increase consumer protection and minimize harm to gamblers.


The report has angered The Wagering Association of Australia which represents bookies saying it is a step backwards and will keep Australian players betting at offshore sites that offer what the legal Australian gambling companies can’t.



Posted in online gambling news.

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