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US – IAGR report reveals challenges and themes in global gambling regulation

By - 25 November 2019

A report by the International Association of Gaming Regulators (IAGR) reveals that tackling problem gambling, consumer protection and gambling-related crime remain key challenges for gambling regulators across the world.

Birgitte Sand, IAGR Patron and Chair of the IAGR Statistics Sub-committee, says the report, which is broken into two parts, a Markets report and a Themes report, provides fascinating analysis on the global approach to gambling regulation.

“The Themes report explores responsible gambling, gambling-related crime and, new for this year, regulatory cooperation,” explained Ms Sand. “The most pressing challenges for regulators were regulatory developments in other jurisdictions, cross-border marketing of online gambling, betting on eSport, social gaming and gambling with crypto currencies. The Market report explores the regulation of gambling markets, our regulatory powers and the issues we are especially focused on. It’s an excellent resource for understanding which markets are permitted, licence models, sales channels, age restrictions for participation across jurisdictions, who benefits from gambling revenues and whether foreign involvement is allowed in domestic markets,” said Ms Sand.

IAGR President, Paul Newson, said the results highlight common issues and challenges as well as some differences in the policy settings and focus of regulators.

“This is a tremendous tool to promote greater information sharing and collaboration around policy development and industry supervision where we exercise similar functions and confront common issues and challenges. Through increased collaboration across jurisdictions we can advance efficient and effective gambling regulation and inform a collective focus and priority where the risks are greatest.”

Other key insights from the report, based on data provided by 44 jurisdictions, include number-based games like lotto are the most common form of gambling, followed by casinos, then betting. The leading gambling-related issues regulators work on are problem gambling, consumer protection, and the regulation of gambling product marketing. Tackling gambling-related crime is a key duty for all regulators, with the top five areas of concern reported as illegal gambling, money-laundering, cheating, match-fixing/spot fixing and underage gambling. Around 90 per cent of respondents have a focus on problem gambling, with two thirds of respondents having mandatory contributions from market operators in place for responsible gambling programs.

Caption: Birgitte Sand

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