Online Gambling Within Australia

Over 80% of Australian adults have gambled or gamble in some form or other and this percentage is actually the highest rate of gambling in the world.

In the year 2007/8 the states collected in the region of $3 billion for poker machines alone and in the region of $4.9 billion from all the forms of gambling which in all accounted for 9.1% of the total revenue collected. The New South Wales government receives about $1 billion from the pokie machines and another $1.6 billion from all forms of gambling.

The winnings of Gamblers within Australia are not taxed as gambling is not considered a profession, it is treated rather as a hobby or a recreational activity. The Australian government actually looks at any winnings a good luck and not as an income as even when someone wins big they usually lose again in other gambling sessions that they may take part in. Instead of taxing the individual who gambles the Australian government taxes the operators and they need to obtain a license to offer their services to the general public. There are also fees to be paid at this stage of any gambling business development.

Since the introduction of new gambling services which include online gambling, the Commonwealth takes an active role in the regulation of gambling and the Australian gambling industry is also regulated by State and Territory authorities.

What Controls Where

  • Australian Capital Territory -ACT Gambling and Racing Commission
  • New South Wales – New South Wales Office of Liquor, Gaming and Racing
  • Northern Territory – Licensing Commission
  • Queensland – Office of Liquor and Gaming Regulation
  • South Australia – Independent Gambling Authority
  • Tasmania – Tasmanian Gaming Commission
  • Victoria – Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation
  • Western Australia – Department of Racing, Gaming and Liquor

Above shows the total employment in the gambling industry in Australia, (in thousands of people) since 1984

Fairfield had the highest poker machine revenue in the state for 2013 and in all generated $298 million in the clubs and $93 million in pubs. This total figure of $123 million is greater than the combined total of profits that were generated from poker machines in the City of Sydney

Poker machines in the Hunter region enjoyed a turnover of $4.5 billion which is an increase of $500 million since 2010. Daily figures show a spending rate of $86282 each minute. Newcastle is Hunter Regions most profitable area with 3206 poker machines averaging in the region of $44.963 each

The Interactive Gambling Act (2001) was passed by the Australian Commonwealth Parliament on the twenty eighth of June 2001 and received assent on July the eleventh 2001. The Act is targeted at online gambling operators within the industry such as Sportsbet and the Act makes it an offence for them to offer ‘real-money’ online interactive gambling to residents of Australia. This Act also makes it illegal for the operators to advertise ‘real-money’ interactive gambling services such as online poker and online casinos to Australian citizens.

The general public can access and use the interactive services as it is not an offence and it is also allowed to companies which are based in Australia to offer services to any gamblers which are located outside of Australia (of course with the exception of those other countries that are called ‘designated countries.)

Interesting Facts

In 1994 the Caribbean nation of Antigua and Barbuda passed the Free Trade and Processing Act which then allowing licences to be granted to organisations applying to open online casinos. Online gambling is also known as internet gambling and iGambling. The first fully functional gambling software was developed by Microgaming and was secured with software developed by CryptoLogic which is an online security software company. Transactions between the general public and the casinos became viable in 1994 which led to the first online casino.

Regulation came to be in 1996 with the establishment of the Kahnawake Gaming Commission that regulated gaming activity online from the Mohawk Territory of Kahnawake issuing gaming licences to many of the the world’s online casinos and poker rooms. Regulation is put into place to attempt to keep the operations of licensed online gambling organisations fair, true and transparent.

It was in the late 1990’s that online gambling gained enormous popularity and in fact in 1998 gambling revenues had exceeded $830 million (it was in 1998 that the first online poker rooms were introduced.)

Information sourced from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia