According to a report ordered by the WA Royal Commission, the state has a high proportion of gamblers but a low level of gambling-related harm due to fewer electronic gaming machines.
Australia.- A report ordered by WA Royal Commission has found that the proportion of gamblers in Western Australia is the highest in the country, but the level of gambling problems is lowest since the state has fewer electronic gaming machines due to a state ban on “pokies”.
According to the report, approximately 63 per cent of Western Australians gamble, compared with 56 per cent in other parts of Australia. However, only 0.9 per cent of Western Australian gamblers are problem gamblers, compared with 2.3 per cent in other states and territories. Only 8.7 per cent of Western Australian gamblers play EGMs, compared with 17.3 per cent elsewhere.
The report, made by a team of CQUniversity gambling researchers led by Matthew Rockloff found no evidence that electronic gaming machines (EGMs) played at Crown Perth caused more problem gambling than elsewhere.
In September, the WA Royal Commission began to question whether there is any difference between pokies and electronic gaming machines (EGMs) as the former are banned in WA but EGMs are allowed in Crown Perth. Committee members acknowledged that the two types of machines have a similar speed of play, although EGMs focus on the visual aspect and the ball drop speed is slower.