In a recent episode of Live with Littlewood, produced by the Institute for Economic Affairs (IEA), Mark Littlewood discussed the ongoing review of the UK’s gambling legislation with a panel of speakers, including Conservative MP Philip Davies.

What is it?

The panel talked about a range of topics relating to the tightening of British gambling legislation in recent years, with the issue of black market betting websites – which has played a central role in the ongoing debate regarding the UK’s gambling overhaul – garnering particular attention.

Who is it?

Moderator – Mark Littlewood, Director General of the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA)

Guest Speaker – Philip Davies, Conservative MP for Shipley

Guest Speaker – Konstantin Kisin, Commentator and Co-Host, Triggernometry

Guest Speaker – Christopher Snowdon, Head of Lifestyle Economics, IEA

Guest Speaker – Ella Whelan, Journalist and Author of What Women Want

Guest Speaker – Tom Whipple, Science Editor, The Times

What is being said?

Commenting on the UK’s existing legislation, and the threat posed by black market operators, Philip Davies MP said: “When I was on the DCMS select committee, we did an inquiry into gambling and we went to different countries around the world, they looked to us as the best example in the world where we’d actually legitimise gambling with regulated, gambling, or very high levels of people betting big legal firms.

“If you look around the world, the problem that you can find is that in many countries, they have very very high levels of people betting illegally on illegal sites. We’re very very low in this country for people betting on illegal sites because if you make it really difficult to gamble, make them jump through all these hoops, sending in their payslips, bank statements, but people are going to do it, and the danger is of those people move to illegal sites where they don’t actually monitor your play, they don’t intervene if you’re losing lots of money.”

Christopher Snowdon added: “I think what you can say is there is certainly no positive correlation in which to say bringing in more restrictions, does not seem to have any real effect on the number of problem gamblers, and you can sort of see that in Britain over the last 20 years. 

“We started measuring problem gambling in 1999, it was 0.6%. It’s stayed almost exactly that figure, very slight fluctuations in the 20 years since, and you think about what’s happened in those 20 years – we’ve had the gambling act, the legalisation of gambling advertising, the rise of online gambling, the rise and fall of fixed-odds betting terminals. None of this has made any difference whatsoever to the number of people gambling or the number of problem gamblers.”

Where can I see more?
Source – IEA YouTube Channel

Philip Davies MP warns of black market operators