Illegal Offshore Gambling Market Poses $3 Billion Risk to Australian Economy
А newly released report highlights the potential economic impact of illegal offshore gambling on the Australian economy. The Australia Offshore Wagering Market Analysis 2023 Report reveals that unless appropriate action is taken, the illegal offshore market will cost the country nearly $3 billion in unpaid taxes, including failed to earn racing and sports product fees over the next five years.
The report says the illegal offshore gambling market in Australia is currently valued at over $1.1 billion, which accounts for approximately 15% of the total Australian gambling market. H2 Gambling Capital, an independent data analyst, drafted the report on behalf of Responsible Wagering Australia.
The report predicts that racing and sports operators may lose $1.6 billion as the product fees, while the potential tax losses may reach $1.3 billion in 2022 – 2027. Offshore operators are neither required to pay the related taxes or product fees, nor they are obliged to care about any consumer protection measures offered by the licensed Australian operators. Consequently, any offshore operator can offer more competitive rates to its customers compared to their licensed onshore peers.
The report highlights an increase in the number of offshore wagering sites actively targeting Australian players, from 47 to 84 sites over the past four years. Some of the sites even facilitate wagering with cryptocurrencies.
Addressing the challenge of eradicating the offshore wagering market, the report emphasizes the importance of maintaining a comprehensive and equitable onshore market licensing system that supports licensed operators. It cautions against the drawbacks of restricting onshore advertising and marketing, as it hinders players from identifying legal and secure gambling platforms. Furthermore, limitations on onshore advertising create an unfair advantage for unlicensed operators who frequently advertise online through affiliate websites that are difficult to regulate.
Kai Cantwell, CEO of Responsible Wagering Australia, expressed his appreciation for the report and emphasized the need for evidence-based regulations in Australia’s lawful online wagering industry. He emphasized the significance of considering the perspectives of the industry, sporting bodies, and broadcasters to ensure balanced reforms that prevent Australian players from resorting to offshore platforms with inadequate player protections.
The report recognizes the Australia’s progressive approach to promoting safe and responsible gambling onshore, citing controls imposed on licensed operators, like the National Consumer Protection Framework. Responsible Wagering Australia and its members are committed to fostering the best conducted and socially responsible wagering industry in the world.
As the House of Representatives Inquiry into Online Gambling advances, Responsible Wagering Australia including its members anticipate further dialogues with the government to implement sensible measures that ensure safe gambling experiences for the six million Australians who enjoy wagering activities. Failuring to maintain a sustainably regulated sports betting market may result in significant potentially lost profit for the country, as well as for the sporting, racing, and broadcasting industries.
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Responsible Wagering Australia is an independent supreme regulator for the Australian-licensed wagering service providers.
Established in 2016, RWA is overseen by its Board of Directors and supported by a small group of executive staff.
RWA and its members are at the forefront of promoting socially responsible wagering and advocating for the highest standards in the sector. Its members are bound by a Code of Conduct and are obliged to maintain the highest standards of integrity and morality.