Australian ban on live betting to stay until next election

Bet365 among firms hit by ban on live betting among with Ladbrokes, William Hill, and more

There is much debate in Australia regarding their ban on live betting. The government has extended it until the next election, along with other reforms.

The Australian government has decided to extend the current live ban on live betting until the next election, which will come at some point before the end of next January. Currently, online betting does occur, but firms seek to classify it as telephone betting, which is legal. According to Australian gambling news, the government will close the current loophole which allows firms to circumvent the ban on live betting online by adding a voice-over when bets are placed.

This news will probably mean that popular online sportsbook, such as Bet365 Sportsbook, will be forced to the in-play capabilities offered on their websites. However, this news will be welcomed by representatives of traditional gambling in Australia. Peter McGauran of Racing Australia had previously called for a complete ban on live betting. He claimed the loophole was unjust and that live-betting could result in the manipulation of sporting events; however, it is likely that he was provoked by fears of a migration of racing punters towards newer forms of gambling.

Ban on live-betting among several gambling rulings by Turnbull government

The ban on live betting will be reassessed only after further customer protection measures are enforced. It is said that the government isn’t yet sure whether it will seek to ban in-play betting permanently, or seek to regulate it after the next election.

They are also seeking to prevent unlicensed foreign firms was taking bets in Australia. Though it is hard to enforce laws against offshore firms, it is felt that the current laws are far to ambiguous. If the laws are clear, as in the case of other countries, then foreign firms may seek to prevent Australians prior to legal enforcement.

The delay till the next election is also a political decision. Independent senator Nick Xenophon is a prominent anti-gambling critic and this move will prevent potentially harmful criticism of the government. Also, the government feared a backlash from traditional gambling locations, opposed to online betting in Australia, like pubs and clubs, which could cause trouble in marginal seats.

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