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Australian government to maintain live-betting ban

Australia’s Federal Government is set to announce it will maintain its ban on online in-play betting to the dismay of wagering operators and major sporting codes, reports The Herald Sun.

Human Services Minister Alan Tudge will release the long-awaited O’Farrell Review into online wagering, as well as the government’s response today.

A number of consumer protections, including a ban on credit betting, and automatic national self-exclusion from all sites will be included.

Australia’s sporting bodies and wagering operators had been lobbying the government to open up in-play betting ahead of the release of the review, claiming the lack of in-play betting in Australia has forced gamblers to seek illegal offshore operators that provide the service.

Some gambling operators, including Tatts and Tabcorp lobbied hard against liberalization, and wanted the loopholes closed that gave independent operators an advantage.

Earlier in the year, leaked polling results revealed that the liberalization of online gambling laws, including allowing in-play betting, will cost the Australian government votes at the next federal election, according to The Australian.

The Crosby Textor polling, which was distributed to a number of federal MPs, showed that 35 percent of voters were less likely to vote for the Coalition Party if it legalized in-play betting. In fact, 33 percent of voters said they were more likely to vote for the government if it strengthened the law on online gambling, according to the poll results.

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