Jun 22, 2011

Last Bets: around the world in online casinos — first stop, Gibraltar

Untaxed, unregulated and under the radar, the so-called "unofficial" sector of online gambling is increasing in popularity.

Tom Cowie

Crikey journalist

Much of Australia’s $22 billion gambling addiction has been well documented, poker machines, table games and wagering are all hugely popular with the punters. But what about online casinos? Untaxed, unregulated and under the radar, this so-called “unofficial” sector of gambling is increasing in popularity.

According to the Productivity Commission, the wild west of unregulated online gambling could be worth as much as $800 million annually. Industry experts recently pegged the number as high as $968 million — with a third of that funneling into online poker.

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2 thoughts on “Last Bets: around the world in online casinos — first stop, Gibraltar

  1. Peter Cohen

    As the former Executive Commissioner of the Victorian Commission for Gambling Regulation, I’d like to clarify a matter in your otherwise excellent on-line gambling story. You wrote, “Presumably letting our gambling revenue go offshore may not sit well with the states. After all, in 2009-10, they took in $5.2 billion of tax dollars from gambling.” It’s worth noting the States developed a regulatory scheme, the so-called AUS Model for interactive gambling, which would have allowed for a licensed industry to operate with integrity and under strict responsible gambling requirements. However, the ban imposed by the Federal government over-rides State based legislation. Any regulatory effort to enforce the ban must therefore come from the Federal government, not the States. And it’s ironic that you mention Alderney, Gibralter and the UK because they have, in effect, adapted the AUS Model very successfully.

  2. Doug

    Although Tom might like to note that Gibraltar is not an ‘English’ colony. None of them have been since the Union of the Parliaments in 1707. It would be a British colony.

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