Australia’s Northern Territory to debate new gambling law

Australia’s Northern Territory to debate new gambling law

The reforms propose tougher fines and a new levy for operators.

Australia.- The parliament of the Northern Territory is to debate a new gambling law aiming to strengthen regulations and oversight in the industry. The proposed reforms, outlined in the Racing and Wagering Bill 2024, include the introduction of a new levy on wagering service providers’ (WSPs) profits, although the rate is yet to be confirmed. Meanwhile, operators found breaching regulations could face fines of up to AU$440,000 (US$287,000). 

Another key change is the requirement for WSPs to have a physical presence in the territory, potentially via a retail office. The reforms would also see the regulator, the NT Racing Commission, renamed as the Racing and Wagering Commission. The NT Racing Commission currently regulates 32 sports bookmakers and two betting exchanges, which collectively earn AU$50bn a year.

Alliance for Gambling Reform CEO Carol Bennett voiced support criticised the lack of representation from gambling support groups in the reform discussions.

Last December, Northern Territory’s Department of Industry, Tourism and Trade reported that gamblers lost nearly AU$150m on slots in the 2022-23 financial year. That’s a daily average of AU$411,000 and an increase of AU$15m from the preceding year. 

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