UK Gambling Commission chief executive Neil McArthur has called on the betting industry to work together and know their customers better to make gambling in Britain the fairest and safest in the world.
McArthur made the call at the regulator’s Raising Standards Conference at the International Conference Centre in Birmingham. The event, attended by 170 leaders from more than 100 gambling businesses, is aimed at encouraging the most senior members of the industry to take action to boost fairness and safety.
He said: “I want consumers in Britain to be able to enjoy the fairest and safest gambling in the world and to achieve my aims I need your support: I need you to work together to make sure you are the best – the fairest, safest – gambling operators in the world.”
McArthur told delegates he wanted gambling businesses to collaborate and focus on three areas: understanding the early signs which could indicate a customer is experiencing or developing problems; interacting with those customers to ensure they can receive support and advice; and rebuilding public trust by changing advertising strategies.
“This is a call to action to join the race to the top,” he said. “A race to put your customers, their enjoyment and their safety at the top of the agenda for your management meetings, your board meetings and meetings with your investors.
“A race to approach the minimum requirements we impose as exactly that: minimums not maximums. A race to look for real solutions to the public health issue of gambling-related harm.”
The conference also heard from Jeremy Wright, Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, and representatives from the Advertising Standards Authority, the Competition and Markets Authority, and Twitter UK.
Guy Parker, ASA chief executive, said: “The existing rules that regulate the content and targeting of gambling advertising are working effectively, but there is public concern about the timing and quantity. The Gambling Commission conference is a great opportunity for gambling firms to discuss how those concerns might be addressed.”