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Ministers are set to unveil new online gambling curbs in bid to stem addiction crisis

Ministers are set to unveil new online gambling curbs in bid to stem addiction crisis

  •  Ministers new legislation will bring affordability checks and ban free bets
  •  Nearly half of footballl clubs were sponsored by gambling companies
  •  Boris Johnson will not ban bookmakers logos on football shirts

Boris Johnson is bringing in online gambling regulations to stem the ‘catastrophic’ impact of addiction

Boris Johnson is bringing in online gambling regulations to stem the ‘catastrophic’ impact of addiction – but will not ban bookies’ logos on football shirts.

Ministers will publish a review of legislation, including new curbs on minimum stakes, ‘non-intrusive’ affordability checks and banning free bets and VIP packages for those who lose big sums.

The Gambling Commission – the industry regulator – will also be given new powers and additional funding, while a new ombudsman will strengthen customers’ rights if gambling companies fail to be socially responsible.

But ministers have dropped plans to ban bookies from sponsoring Premier League football shirts. Instead, the Government hopes to reach a voluntary agreement with football clubs.

Nearly half the clubs last season were sponsored by gambling companies, including Newcastle and West Ham. Plans for a levy on the gambling industry to fund research into addiction and treatment for it have also been axed.

Newcastle football club had sports betting site Fun88 sponsor their kit last season

Newcastle football club had sports betting site Fun88 sponsor their kit last season

Regulations for bricks-and-mortar casinos will be relaxed to level the playing field with online rivals. For example, high street casinos will be allowed to install up to 80 gaming machines – up from the current 20. The Government says online revenues could fall by more than £700million as a result of the new rules.

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