The trade association has written to the new gambling minister Damian Collins.
UK.- The British Amusement Catering Trade Association (Bacta) has renewed its calls for customers to be allowed to use debit cards to play on gaming machines. The industry body, which represents amusement arcades and gaming halls, has written to Damian Collins, the minister who’s been given responsibility for gambling following Chris Philp’s resignation.
Bacta is calling for the UK’s review of gambling legislation to contemplate the introduction of laws to allow debit card transactions for play on gaming machines at land-based gambling venues.
Bacta chief executive John White expressed concern that the government’s much-delayed gambling white paper may ignore the land-based amusement sector’s request for card transactions to be allowed. He says such a move would seriously jeopardise the future of the sector due to the decreased use of cash.
He wrote: “It is vital that the upcoming review recognises the importance of the land-based sector to the wider industry, whilst also taking steps to ensure that those businesses on our high streets, seafronts and across the supply chain are given the support they need to flourish.
“It is our view that, while the review is supposed to be about bringing the act into the digital age and redressing the balance between online and offline, such a move disadvantages members like ours, and stands in contrast to the wider societal trends towards cashless payments.
“This was a view we set out in a letter to the Prime Minister last week, and we would welcome the opportunity to discuss this with you directly.”
He added: “The result must be a system which delivers the most socially responsible products, provides the Gambling Commission with the powers it needs, and is fit for purpose in the 21st Century,” White said.
“Ahead of the publication of the review, which we have heard could be as soon as next week, we would welcome the opportunity to meet with you to discuss our views on the review and how it can support our members.”
Whether the publication of the white paper comes as soon as next week is seriously in doubt, however, with reports suggesting that it is likely to be delayed until after a new Prime Minister is chosen.