UK Operators Must Reapply For Licence, Says Labour Deputy

Viktor Vangelov | Published 21 May 2019, 11:28 a.m.

The Labour Party has been in favour of introducing stricter gambling regulations for a while now, even though it was Tony Blair’s Government that open the market especially in regard to online gambling. According to Deputy Leader, Tom Watson, all operators who are currently licenced to operate in the country should be asked to reapply for a license and then, following a careful revaluation process the authorities will determine which operator should be granted a license to operate.

Watson has already written a letter to the Culture Secretary in which he stated that at least one third, or perhaps even more of all operators are continuously failing their customers and should not be allowed to provide their services any longer. We are yet to see whether the Government will respond positively to the demand, but one thing is clear – Labour’s tough stance towards online gambling will have an impact, even if the party doesn’t get into power soon.

Earlier this month we asked the question ‘Does the UK voluntary donation system work?’ and that’s one of the issue which draw criticism from the public. At the beginning of the year, the Government pledged to tackle problem gambling, and it is evident that they will face pressure on the matter.

Some Operators Need To Put More Effort

Speaking about the failure of the voluntary donations system, Watson included this notion in his letter to the Minister, quoting the UKGC report which showed that operators paid £120 million in sponsorship deals to leading football clubs, while managing to donate only £50 per team to one of the country’s largest gambling charities.

Watson further stated that an organisation has to be credible and trusted to be granted a gambling licence, whereas many operators are simply trying to push the limits and use the opportunity to contribute as little to society.

The Gambling Commission is forced to play catchup in Watson’s opinion, and that’s getting extremely difficult, that’s why a review of all issued licences is necessary in his opinion.

Betting Legalisation In Rhode Island Drawn To A Halt

And while in the UK politicians are pushing for restrictions and stricter controls on gambling forms that are currently legal in the country, on the other side of the pond, proponents of gambling legalisation are pushing forward with the attempts of legalising gambling in various states.

In the case of Rhode Island, it appears that they will need to wait slightly longer. With the proposed bill, one company in Rhode Island will get a monopoly on sports betting, the name of the company in question is Twin River Management Group.

With this model, Rhode Island cannot benefit from competition and what it brings to the online gambling market. All previous cases have shown that where there’s competition both the state and the players benefit. It is natural why a company would be in favour of getting a monopoly position on the market, but when it comes to the state and punters, they would obviously prefer competition, as it means more tax revenue for the state and better terms and offers for the players.

Everybody would prefer if sports betting becomes an option by the beginning of the new NFL season, as most of the land-based betting in the state was on Patriots games.