Aussie credit card gambling ban gains traction

by Mia Chapman Last Updated
Tabcorp boss fronts government committee examining credit cards and online gambling

Australia is taking steps to follow the UK Government in implementing a credit card gambling ban which will prohibit the use of credit cards when gambling offline.

Tech Guide reports that the Australian Government is looking to impose restrictions, similar to the United Kingdom Gambling Commission’s, regarding the use of credit cards.

After Queensland MP Andrew Wallace successfully accumulated the support of the top four Australian banks, the fact that credit card gambling in Australia is about to face a ban became more obvious.

Local gambling operators tried to justify that there is no such necessity for the smooth operation of the industry and the step is rather harsh.

This change was not favoured by the local gambling associations, but the support from the leading banks helped Wallace solidify his plan.

New Zealand is also following Australia’s example.

Wagering lobby group against credit card ban

Wallace points out the problems of credit card wagering, saying it is highly risky to be gambling on credit and the lofty interest rates make it even more dangerous for people to play using credit cards.

Some Australian banks have already implemented a ban, including Suncorp and Macquarie.

According to the Australian Banking Association, it has been quite a task to implement the measures being formulated.

A meeting was held where it was decided by NAB, ANZ, CommBank and Westpac that the changes were required for the sake of public welfare.

According to the leaders, allowing customers to be in a state where they can voluntarily borrow money for credit will only lead them into facing more problems.

The rate of interest is as high as 22 per cent and taking money on credit for gambling is sure to lead them into bankruptcy.

Kiwibank also introduced a gambling block feature.

The ANZ gave a statement where they are in support of the legislative ban in the UK, where the operators do not accept payments through credit cards.

Moreover, the ABA stated that they would support the continuation of working with the government.

Credit card ban ‘lacks evidence’: Responsible Wagering Australia

Lobby group Responsible Wagering Australia hit back at the proposition saying that there is a lack of evidence supporting its cause.

The chief executive of RWA Brent Jackson came out about their opposition to the banning of credit card gambling, declining the opinion of the government.

According to him, there is no valid reason to keep punters from opting for credit cards out of their choice.

He said, “The only position we’ve seen to people using their credit card for online betting or to buy scratchies at their local newsagent is from people who have a moral opposition to gambling.”

Although Wallace is willing to fight the betting companies in relation to this opposition, he is assured the change has the support of the majority of Australians.

Hopefully gambling operators will take responsibility since people are exposed to using their credit cards to gamble, he said. 

In the UK, the UKGC has been instrumental in launching several initiatives and collaborations with football clubs, banks and other sports foundations to mindfully channel anti-gambling endorsements and merchandise, which might promote gambling across the underage youth group.

The UK banned credit card gambling in April 2020, after a review into the industry by the government.

A total of 24 million adults in Britain gamble, with 10.5 million of those doing so online.

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