UK Gambling Commission Launches Consultations For Changes in Regulation

The UK Gambling Commission, Great Britain’s regulator of the online and land-based gambling industry, has announced that it began consultations to “ensure more effective regulation” of the market. They are set to last 13 weeks and will cover financial key event reporting and penalties. 

The Commission Urges Its Stakeholders To Voice Their Opinion

In a report on its official website, the UKGC encouraged all of its stakeholders to voice their opinions on the matter. It also added that “all views on proposed changes will be considered.” 

Regarding financial penalties, the Commission states that they will be imposed if a licensed entity breaches one regulatory rule. Consultation will be needed to determine how high the fine should be. 

One of the current proposals states that the starting point for the potential penalty is to reference the seriousness of the breach. Depending on the seriousness, operators will have to pay a percentage of their Gross Gambling Yield generated during the period when the rule was broken. 

In terms of financial key event reporting, the Commission states that every licensee must provide it with all information regarding interests, ownership and finances. Several amendments were proposed. According to the regulator, they are the result of the increase in the “complexity of mergers and acquisitions” as well as the rate at which gambling is being globalized. 

UKGC’s executive director of operations, Kay Roberts, shared that the consultations are a part of the Commission’s efforts to ensure that Great Britain remains the “most effectively regulated gambling sector” in the world. 

Research Shows that The UK Youth is Still Exposed to Gambling

Recently, the UKGC has been pretty active in making sure that gamblers stay protected. It issued fines to several entities, the most recent one being Gamesys for failing to comply with social responsibility and AML policies. 

The public issued its support for these actions because reports show that they are now extremely exposed to the gambling industry. The 2023 Young People and Gambling report showed that 26% of kids between 11 and 17 even spend their own money on gambling. Although this is a 5% decrease compared to 2022, it remains high. 

Additionally, the report noted that 1.5% of the respondents were even identified as at-risk gamblers. Problem gamblers reached 0.5%, which is a 0.4% decrease compared to 2022. 

In terms of gambling adverts, 55% of them reported that they have seen offline ads and 53% noted that they’ve seen online ads. This is also a decrease compared to 2022 – 66% for offline ads and 63% for online ads. 

This research was conducted in various schools and pupils had online self-completion surveys during class. In total, the survey had 3,453 respondents. Seventeen-year-olds that attend various academies and schools across England, Wales and Scotland were part of the survey for the first time in history. 

In response to the survey, the UKGC noted that it has effective tools in place to protect minors. Hence, the numbers mean that young people likely spent their money on legal machines that didn’t have any age restriction policies. These include arcade machines, playing cards and placing a bet for money between family or friends.  

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