HC Deb 16 February 2000 vol 344 cc537-8W
Mr. Stephen Twigg

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when he plans to announce the appointment of the Chairman of the Gambling Review Body and the body's terms of reference. [110759]

Mr. Straw

Further to the reply I gave my hon. Friend the Member for Dundee, West (Mr. Ross) on 8 December 1999,Official Report, column 534W, I have today appointed Sir Alan Budd as Chairman of the Gambling Review Body.

Sir Alan Budd is Provost of Queen's College, Oxford, and a former Chief Economic Adviser to the Treasury. The position is unpaid.

We will make a further announcement on the membership of the Review Body in the next few weeks. We hope it will start work shortly after Easter to report by the Summer 2001.

The terms of Reference for the gambling review are as follows: Consider the current state of the gambling industry and the ways in which it might change over the next 10 years in the light of economic pressures, the growth of e-commerce, technological developments and wider leisure industry and international trends. Consider the social impact of gambling and the costs and benefits. Consider, and make recommendations for, the kind and extent of regulation appropriate for gambling activities in Great Britain, having regard to: their wider social impact; the need to protect the young and vulnerable from exploitation and to protect all gamblers from unfair practices; the importance of preventing gambling from being carried out in a way which allows crime disorder or public nuisance; the need to keep the industry free from infiltration by organised and other serious crime, and from money laundering risks; the desirability of creating an environment in which the commercial opportunities for gambling, including its international competitiveness, maximise the United Kingdom's economic welfare; and the implications for the current system of taxation, and the scope for its further development. Consider the need for, and, if necessary, recommend new machinery appropriate for carrying out that regulation which achieves a more consistent and streamlined approach than is now possible and which is financed by the gambling industry itself. Consider the availability and effectiveness of treatment programmes for problem gamblers and make recommendations for their future provision, potential costings and funding. In conducting this review, the body should not consider changes to the National Lottery, but it will need to look at the impact on the Lottery of any proposed changes, including an assessment of the potential effect on the income to good causes.

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