More of the same in the coming year

The Gambling Commission has published its Annual Report and Accounts 2016/17 that are available here or can be downloaded below.

The introductory statement by the Commission’s chairman Bill Moyes indicates that the Commission’s key themes are set to continue in the coming year. He says: “The gambling industry provides entertainment that many people value and it creates jobs and wealth. However, problem gambling has a real cost to the economy and to the individuals and families affected by it, although the scale of the adverse impact is currently poorly understood. Public opinion also needs to be taken into account. Even those who are strong supporters of gambling share some of the concerns expressed by the wider public about the place of gambling in society ….. Underpinning our consideration of all these issues, and, indeed, every aspect of the work of the Commission, is the question: What kind of gambling market does Britain want? Does the country want gambling to be a constantly growing industry operating within a light-touch regulatory approach? Or, is the public inclined to be less supportive of growth and increasing accessibility, and more supportive of a tightening of regulations? ….. It would appear ….. that public attitudes towards gambling have become less tolerant. This is a trend which we must recognise and will influence our approach to regulation ….. The interests of the gambling consumer will be central to how we operate and develop our regulation, and allocate our resources ….. Our strategy will also signal a clear intention to give greater priority to the protection of vulnerable, or potentially vulnerable groups.” 

For a commentary on these themes that are reflected in a recent speech by Gambling Commission Executive Director, Tim Miller, see David Clifton’s most recent monthly “Licensing Expert” article for SBC News.