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UK Government Cracks Down on Fixed-Odds Betting Terminals

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UK Government Cracks Down on Fixed-Odds Betting Terminals

The UK government has announced that they will go ahead with a planned crackdown on fixed-odds betting terminals. They aim to reduce the maximum bet by April 2019, taking the maximum bet down to £2. At the moment, the most a player can bet per turn is £100.

The change to the rules was opposed by a number of Tory MPs, including both Boris Johnson and Iain Duncan Smith. The ongoing delays also led to sports minister Tracey Crouch resigning from the cabinet in protest at the amount of time the changes were taking to be implemented. She has been contacted about the move and states she’s glad that “common sense” has managed to prevail.

Fixed-odds betting terminals have been found in UK betting shops since 1999, and they allow players to bet on games such as roulette with a single press of a button. The fast pace of the games meant that many found themselves losing large amounts in short periods of time. The government felt this contributed to gambling addiction problems for many UK gamblers.

These betting terminals are exceptionally popular, with their use rising by 74% in just the last year. This means that they earned a massive £1.83 billion in the past year. What’s more, FOBTs gave more profit to online gambling companies than traditional bookmaker bets. Their popularity has led to them being described as the “crack-cocaine of the gambling world”.

The reduction of maximum bets had meant that the government faced a shortfall in gambling revenue, however Culture Secretary Jeremy Wright has announced there will be an increase in Remote Gaming Duty. This increase should cover the shortfall, ensuring the government does not miss out on money from the gambling industry.

The Remote Gaming Duty increase could affect those who gamble at UK registered casinos from abroad, as it could see RTPs falling, as casinos look to pass on their losses to players. This won’t be the case at Conquer Casino UK though, which accepts players online from throughout the UK and the rest of the world.



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