Australia Tables New Interactive Gambling Laws

Published Thursday, November 10, 2016 -
Australia Tables New Interactive Gambling Laws

Australian government officials have been grappling with regulations for the online gambling industry for a long time now. Now after much debate the new Interactive Gambling Amendment Bill 2016 has been introduced that will require online gambling operators active in Australia to acquire local licences or be subject to serious fines. The passing of the legislation will give the Australian Communications and Media Authority the power to issue civil penalties, without the Australian Federal Police involvement.

The Australian government has been attempting to reign in certain aspects of the online gambling industry in the country by prohibiting in-play betting applications keeping track of the international online betting enterprises that are skirting the existing laws on internet betting. Consultations resulted in the establishment of a National Consumer Protection Framework (NCPF) a body created to protect customers participating in one of the biggest gambling markets in the world. The fines associated with the new legislation are substantial for operators without a local licence. Individuals face penalties of up to $1.35 million AUD and unlawful companies will be fined up to $6.75 million AUD.

Australia’s Human Services Minister, Alan Tudge, said the Ministry would close loopholes by amending the 2001 Interactive Gambling Act that enabled licensed operators in the country to take in-play bets online.

Mr. Tudge commented to the Guardian newspaper,  “Currently hundreds of illegal gambling services are easily accessible on the internet and we know that people are more likely to get into trouble online – 2.7% of interactive gamblers are problem gamblers compared to 0.9% of all gamblers,”  

Tudge  continued, “We expect online wagering providers to meet community expectations; the tougher laws will seriously disrupt illegal offshore providers from acting unscrupulously or targeting vulnerable Australians.” “The government is committed to taking tougher action against illegal offshore wagering providers and this bill does exactly that.”



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