Campaign to change pokies bet limit

A retail group could exit the electronic gaming machine business.

Australia.- Wesfarmers, an Australian retail group, said that they could exit the electronic gaming machine (EGM) business if the government doesn’t establish a $1 per spin limit to every slot machine in the country.

Richard Goyder, Wesfarmers chief executive, told The Business that they had a conversation at board level about this and there’s a really strong desire from both Wesfarmers and Coles to move this along and that he’s hopeful this will happen. “We need that legislation to change and it’s fair to say we’ll look at all options, but at the end of the day we are a good operator and an ethical operator of these businesses and we should be allowed to trial $1 spin limits in line with the Productivity Commission recommendations.”

Known anti-gambling campaigner Andrew Wilkie said that it’s not surprising that manufacturers are refusing to make safer $1-maximum bet machines. “We know that 40 per cent of money lost on poker machines is lost by gambling addicts and any corporation whose business model depends on this, or which supports the operators of poker slot machines, is patently unethical and to be condemned,” he added.