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Written Question
Football: Gambling
1 Dec 2021

Questioner: Carolyn Harris (LAB - Swansea East)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if she will take steps in the forthcoming gambling White Paper to end front of shirt sponsorship by gambling companies which do not have an operational website and offer gambling via cryptocurrency.

Answered by Chris Philp

All gambling companies providing gambling facilities to consumers in Great Britain, wherever they are based, must be licensed by the Gambling Commission and comply with the conditions and codes of practice of their operating licences. Operators who provide services marketed under a different brand as part of a ‘white label’ agreement are held accountable by the Commission for the actions of their commercial partners, and are expected to carry out all necessary due diligence to ensure the agreement will not compromise their own regulatory compliance.

Licensed gambling operators and their white label partners are entitled to enter into commercial arrangements with sporting bodies, as long as any sponsorship activities are carried out in a socially responsible way. The Commission expects licensees to ensure that all parties are aware of, and compliant with, the relevant advertising and sponsorship rules and regulations.

Operators are also required to declare the arrangements through which they accept payment from customers to the Commission. This includes changes to the payment methods (including cryptoassets) or payment processors made available to customers to pay for gambling services. To date, no licensed operators have notified the Gambling Commission that they are accepting digital currencies or cryptoassets directly as payments but several have reported indirectly accepting funds derived from cryptoassets via a third party payment provider. In these cases, funds accepted by the licensee for gambling have been converted to fiat currency (£).

The Government is looking closely at the evidence regarding sports sponsorship by gambling operators and ‘white label’ arrangements as part of the wide-ranging Review of the Gambling Act. We will publish a White Paper setting out our conclusions and next steps in the coming months.


Written Question
Football: Gambling
1 Dec 2021

Questioner: Carolyn Harris (LAB - Swansea East)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if she will take steps in the forthcoming gambling White Paper to end football club sponsorship by gambling companies which do not have an operational website and which offer gambling via cryptocurrency.

Answered by Chris Philp

All gambling companies providing gambling facilities to consumers in Great Britain, wherever they are based, must be licensed by the Gambling Commission and comply with the conditions and codes of practice of their operating licences. Operators who provide services marketed under a different brand as part of a ‘white label’ agreement are held accountable by the Commission for the actions of their commercial partners, and are expected to carry out all necessary due diligence to ensure the agreement will not compromise their own regulatory compliance.

Licensed gambling operators and their white label partners are entitled to enter into commercial arrangements with sporting bodies, as long as any sponsorship activities are carried out in a socially responsible way. The Commission expects licensees to ensure that all parties are aware of, and compliant with, the relevant advertising and sponsorship rules and regulations.

Operators are also required to declare the arrangements through which they accept payment from customers to the Commission. This includes changes to the payment methods (including cryptoassets) or payment processors made available to customers to pay for gambling services. To date, no licensed operators have notified the Gambling Commission that they are accepting digital currencies or cryptoassets directly as payments but several have reported indirectly accepting funds derived from cryptoassets via a third party payment provider. In these cases, funds accepted by the licensee for gambling have been converted to fiat currency (£).

The Government is looking closely at the evidence regarding sports sponsorship by gambling operators and ‘white label’ arrangements as part of the wide-ranging Review of the Gambling Act. We will publish a White Paper setting out our conclusions and next steps in the coming months.


Written Question
Football Index: Compensation
30 Nov 2021

Questioner: Charles Walker (CON - Broxbourne)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether the Government plans to compensate people who lost money as a result of the collapse of Football Index; and if she will make a statement.

Answered by Chris Philp

The Government appreciates the significant impact that the collapse of the novel gambling product Football Index had on former customers. BetIndex, the company which operated Football Index, went into liquidation on 5 November. The process is continuing and it is likely that this will result in some amounts being reimbursed to creditors. There is no compensation scheme for losses caused by a gambling firm ceasing to operate and the government does not think it would be appropriate to use public funds for these purposes.


Written Question
Football Index: Compensation
25 Nov 2021

Questioner: Chi Onwurah (LAB - Newcastle upon Tyne Central)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps is she taking to ensure that the victims of the Football Index scandal are compensated for their losses on investments.

Answered by Chris Philp

The government appreciates the significant impact that the collapse of the novel gambling product Football Index had on former customers. BetIndex, the company which operated Football Index, went into liquidation on 5 November. The process is continuing and it is likely that this will result in some amounts being reimbursed to creditors. There is no compensation scheme for losses caused by a gambling firm ceasing to operate and the government does not think it would be appropriate to use public funds for these purposes.


Written Question
Football Index: Compensation
19 Nov 2021

Questioner: Rupa Huq (LAB - Ealing Central and Acton)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent assessment she has made of the potential merits of establishing a compensation scheme in order to grant financial redress to customers of Football Index.

Answered by Chris Philp

The government appreciates the significant impact that the collapse of the novel gambling product Football Index had on former customers. BetIndex, the company which operated Football Index, went into liquidation on 5 November. The process is continuing and it is likely that this will result in some amounts being reimbursed to creditors. There is no compensation scheme for losses caused by a gambling firm ceasing to operate and the government does not think it would be appropriate to use public funds for these purposes.


Written Question
Football Index: Compensation
8 Nov 2021

Questioner: Mike Amesbury (LAB - Weaver Vale)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether she plans to offer redress for those affected by the Football Index collapse.

Answered by Chris Philp

The government appreciates the significant impact that the collapse of the novel gambling product Football Index had on former customers. Administration proceedings for BetIndex, the company which operated Football Index, are continuing, and are looking at the assets and liabilities of the operator and what is owed to customers. It is likely that this process will result in some amounts being reimbursed to creditors. There is no compensation scheme for losses caused by a gambling firm ceasing to operate and the government does not think it would be appropriate to use public funds for these purposes.


Written Question
Football Index: Compensation
4 Nov 2021

Questioner: Claire Hanna (SDLP - Belfast South)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment she has made of the potential merits of introducing a full redress scheme for losses incurred by customers of Football Index affected by its collapse.

Answered by Chris Philp

The government appreciates the significant impact that the collapse of the novel gambling product Football Index had on former customers. Administration proceedings for BetIndex, the company which operated Football Index, are continuing, and are looking at the assets and liabilities of the operator and what is owed to customers. It is likely that this process will result in some amounts being reimbursed to creditors. There is no compensation scheme for losses caused by a gambling firm ceasing to operate and the government does not think it would be appropriate to use public funds for these purposes.


Written Question
Football Index: Compensation
2 Nov 2021

Questioner: Ronnie Cowan (SNP - Inverclyde)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether her Department is taking steps to financially redress people who lost money with the collapse of the Football Index.

Answered by Chris Philp

The government appreciates the significant impact that the collapse of the novel gambling product Football Index had on former customers. Administration proceedings for BetIndex, the company which operated Football Index, are continuing. These are looking at the assets and liabilities of the operator and what is owed to customers. It is likely that this process will result in some amounts being reimbursed to creditors.


Written Question
Gambling: Medical Treatments and Research
29 Oct 2021

Questioner: Carolyn Harris (LAB - Swansea East)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment her Department has made of the potential merits of introducing a statutory smart levy on the research, education and treatment of gambling addiction.

Answered by Chris Philp

The government launched its Review of the Gambling Act 2005 on 8 December with the publication of Terms of Reference and a Call for Evidence. The Review is wide-ranging and aims to ensure that the regulation of gambling is fit for the digital age. The call for evidence included questions on the appropriate mechanism for recouping the societal and regulatory costs of gambling, as well as the benefits and harms surrounding gambling advertising, including football sponsorship. We are carefully considering over 16,000 submissions we received, evidence from ministerial and official meetings with stakeholders, and other more recent evidence including the Public Health England evidence review which was published last month. Details of ministerial meetings can be found here.

We will publish a white paper setting out our conclusions and vision for the sector in due course, and this will include an indication of how any changes will be implemented, whether by legislation or other means.

Alongside the Review, regulators are continuing to raise standards and increase protections for players. Working closely with the Gambling Commission, the Information Commissioner’s Office recently published a report confirming it is possible under data protection law to share data safely and securely between online operators to help prevent gambling related harm. We expect the industry to proceed to trial its planned single customer view solution and will continue to monitor developments closely.


Written Question
Gambling: Reform
29 Oct 2021

Questioner: Carolyn Harris (LAB - Swansea East)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment her Department has made of which areas of gambling reform do not require primary legislation.

Answered by Chris Philp

The government launched its Review of the Gambling Act 2005 on 8 December with the publication of Terms of Reference and a Call for Evidence. The Review is wide-ranging and aims to ensure that the regulation of gambling is fit for the digital age. The call for evidence included questions on the appropriate mechanism for recouping the societal and regulatory costs of gambling, as well as the benefits and harms surrounding gambling advertising, including football sponsorship. We are carefully considering over 16,000 submissions we received, evidence from ministerial and official meetings with stakeholders, and other more recent evidence including the Public Health England evidence review which was published last month. Details of ministerial meetings can be found here.

We will publish a white paper setting out our conclusions and vision for the sector in due course, and this will include an indication of how any changes will be implemented, whether by legislation or other means.

Alongside the Review, regulators are continuing to raise standards and increase protections for players. Working closely with the Gambling Commission, the Information Commissioner’s Office recently published a report confirming it is possible under data protection law to share data safely and securely between online operators to help prevent gambling related harm. We expect the industry to proceed to trial its planned single customer view solution and will continue to monitor developments closely.


Written Question
Gambling: Advertising
29 Oct 2021

Questioner: Carolyn Harris (LAB - Swansea East)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what discussions she has had with sports bodies on front-of-shirt gambling advertising.

Answered by Chris Philp

The government launched its Review of the Gambling Act 2005 on 8 December with the publication of Terms of Reference and a Call for Evidence. The Review is wide-ranging and aims to ensure that the regulation of gambling is fit for the digital age. The call for evidence included questions on the appropriate mechanism for recouping the societal and regulatory costs of gambling, as well as the benefits and harms surrounding gambling advertising, including football sponsorship. We are carefully considering over 16,000 submissions we received, evidence from ministerial and official meetings with stakeholders, and other more recent evidence including the Public Health England evidence review which was published last month. Details of ministerial meetings can be found here.

We will publish a white paper setting out our conclusions and vision for the sector in due course, and this will include an indication of how any changes will be implemented, whether by legislation or other means.

Alongside the Review, regulators are continuing to raise standards and increase protections for players. Working closely with the Gambling Commission, the Information Commissioner’s Office recently published a report confirming it is possible under data protection law to share data safely and securely between online operators to help prevent gambling related harm. We expect the industry to proceed to trial its planned single customer view solution and will continue to monitor developments closely.


Written Question
Gambling
29 Oct 2021

Questioner: Carolyn Harris (LAB - Swansea East)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, when a Single Customer View system will be introduced for remote gambling.

Answered by Chris Philp

The government launched its Review of the Gambling Act 2005 on 8 December with the publication of Terms of Reference and a Call for Evidence. The Review is wide-ranging and aims to ensure that the regulation of gambling is fit for the digital age. The call for evidence included questions on the appropriate mechanism for recouping the societal and regulatory costs of gambling, as well as the benefits and harms surrounding gambling advertising, including football sponsorship. We are carefully considering over 16,000 submissions we received, evidence from ministerial and official meetings with stakeholders, and other more recent evidence including the Public Health England evidence review which was published last month. Details of ministerial meetings can be found here.

We will publish a white paper setting out our conclusions and vision for the sector in due course, and this will include an indication of how any changes will be implemented, whether by legislation or other means.

Alongside the Review, regulators are continuing to raise standards and increase protections for players. Working closely with the Gambling Commission, the Information Commissioner’s Office recently published a report confirming it is possible under data protection law to share data safely and securely between online operators to help prevent gambling related harm. We expect the industry to proceed to trial its planned single customer view solution and will continue to monitor developments closely.


Written Question
Gambling
29 Oct 2021

Questioner: Carolyn Harris (LAB - Swansea East)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, when her Department plans to publish the gambling white paper.

Answered by Chris Philp

The government launched its Review of the Gambling Act 2005 on 8 December with the publication of Terms of Reference and a Call for Evidence. The Review is wide-ranging and aims to ensure that the regulation of gambling is fit for the digital age. The call for evidence included questions on the appropriate mechanism for recouping the societal and regulatory costs of gambling, as well as the benefits and harms surrounding gambling advertising, including football sponsorship. We are carefully considering over 16,000 submissions we received, evidence from ministerial and official meetings with stakeholders, and other more recent evidence including the Public Health England evidence review which was published last month. Details of ministerial meetings can be found here.

We will publish a white paper setting out our conclusions and vision for the sector in due course, and this will include an indication of how any changes will be implemented, whether by legislation or other means.

Alongside the Review, regulators are continuing to raise standards and increase protections for players. Working closely with the Gambling Commission, the Information Commissioner’s Office recently published a report confirming it is possible under data protection law to share data safely and securely between online operators to help prevent gambling related harm. We expect the industry to proceed to trial its planned single customer view solution and will continue to monitor developments closely.


Written Question
Football Index
27 Oct 2021

Questioner: Kate Osamor (LAB - Edmonton)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, in the context of the collapse of football gambling firm Football Index, what steps she is taking to help ensure that those persons (a) affected by the collapse are compensated and (b) responsible for that collapse are held to account.

Answered by Chris Philp

The government appreciates the significant impact that the collapse of the novel gambling product Football Index had on former customers. Administration proceedings for BetIndex, the company which operated Football Index, are continuing. These are looking at the assets and liabilities of the operator and what is owed to customers. It is likely that this process will result in some amounts being reimbursed to creditors.

The Gambling Commission has revoked BetIndex’s operating licence and the Personal Management Licences held by senior members of the company have been surrendered. The Commission has also referred the company to the Insolvency Service to ask that they consider whether the actions of the directors prior to administration breached insolvency or fraud laws.


Written Question
Football Index
10 Sep 2021

Questioner: Charlotte Nichols (LAB - Warrington North)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, when the independent review into the collapse of football gambling firm, Football Index, will be complete.

Answered by John Whittingdale

The Secretary of State has appointed Malcolm Sheehan QC to lead the independent review into the regulation of BetIndex Limited, the operators of Football Index. The independent review is expected to provide a report for publication shortly. Its findings will form part of the evidence informing the government’s ongoing Review of the Gambling Act 2005, which was announced in December 2020.