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Australia considering change to gambling regulations

Recent report from Australia's Daily Telegraph newspaper suggests government could soon legalise in-play online sportsbetting along with Internet poker.

Tuesday 29th May 2012

Punters in Australia could soon be permitted to place in-play online sports wagers and enjoy real-money games of Internet poker under controversial measures currently being considered by the federal government. According to a recent report from Australia's Daily Telegraph newspaper, members of the government of Prime Minister Julia Gillard recently briefed the Australian gaming industry on measures that would enable online in-play sportsbetting within the next six to twelve months. The newspaper revealed that the proposed measures are an attempt by the ruling centre-left Australian Labor Party to help punters avoid unregulated overseas betting and cited ‘industry sources’ in reporting that online poker could soon be trialled for up to five years. In-play betting in Australia is currently offered only via telephone and in person but its expansion online could be worth up to $300 million a year. Although a recent report from the nation’s Gambling Reform Committee recommended against legalising live wagering and poker over the Internet, it stated that the rules on sportsbetting could be loosened in order to allow punters to wager on end results over the Internet but not on individual events. The Daily Telegraph reported that Merrill Lynch gaming analyst Mark Bryan briefed clients on the government's plans via e-mail on May 9 after attending an online gaming symposium with Tattersalls Group, TabCorp Holding Limited, Jumbo Interactive Limited and others. “In-play live online betting: many in the industry indicated that they expect this to be legalised alongside poker in the next six to twelve months following overseas precedents,” Bryan wrote. “It seems (Communications Minister) Stephen Conroy's department recently provided a brief on draft legislation.” The newspaper reported that other ‘industry members’ had since confirmed Bryan's e-mail and revealed that senior government figures believe the moves could clean up ‘inconsistencies between local and overseas laws’. “Mr Conroy's spokesman refused to rule out the changes or comment on the briefings, saying his department was finalising its review of the Interactive Gambling Act introduced under the Howard government in 2001,” read the report from The Daily Telegraph.

Source: OnlineCasinoNews

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