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Australia to crack down on illegal offshore betting operators

Staff writer ▼ | September 8, 2015
Australia is set to crack down on illegal offshore gambling, with Social Services Minister Scott Morrison flagging a review of betting operators conducting business in Australia.
Scott Morrison
Gambling   Social Services Minister Scott Morrison:
Morrison said that while online betting and gambling is a 1.1 billions U.S. dollar industry in Australia, more than 60 percent of operators do not pay tax.

He said the government would be undertaking a "serious review" of the nation's gambling laws.

"According to the Australian Institute of Family Studies (AIFS) online gambling is a $1.6 billion business in Australia with sixty percent of this revenue going offshore to more than 2, 000 sites beyond the reach of our regulators and tax collectors," Morrison said in a statement.

"Unlike Australia's licensed operators, overseas agencies don't contribute product fees to racing and sporting bodies, do not comply with Australia's legal system and are not obligated to monitor and report suspicious betting activity. Illegal offshore wagering also leaves Australian punters without protection for payouts on their winnings."

Morrison said gambling addiction affects hundreds of thousands of Australians and by not properly monitoring and taxing these offshore companies, many are susceptible to losing a lot more than their money.