The UK government has confirmed this afternoon that it will bring forward its planned FOBTs £2 machine wagering reduction from October to April 2019.
UK Culture Secretary Jeremy Wright has announced the government’s policy U-turn on the contentious issue of FOBTs wagering which has divided government departments.
The 2018 Budget announcement on 29 October, saw the UK treasury criticised for failing to commit to a desired April 2019 deadline on implementing the £2 FOBTs wagering limit.
Furthermore, the FOBTs agenda hit national headlines shortly after the Budget’s publication, following the resignation of UK Sports Minister Tracey Crouch over the government’s October 2019 delay.
The Treasury and the office of the PM had defended their position on the matter, stating that the government had committed to delivering its planned FOBTs reduction in 2019, and that industry stakeholders needed a transition period to adjust to new business realities.
This week, UK news sources reported that 100 cross-party MPs were preparing to push for an amendment forcing the government to bring it FOBTs reduction forward.
Amid, growing pressure, government insiders this morning revealed that Culture Secretary Jeremy Wright would announce the change in policy implementation dates.
“The implementation of changes to reduce the stakes of B2 Gaming Machines from £100 to £2 will take place in April 2019” DCMS confirmed.
Supporting its planned FOBTs reduction, the government will bring forward its intended online gambling remote-gambling-duty increase to 21% (from previous 15%) to counter any potential impacts on public finances.
UK Government announcement on FOBTs implementation