Betting firms face fresh gambling tax in big government shake-up

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BETTING companies will be slapped with a fresh gambling tax under a huge shake-up of the industry being revealed within weeks.

Ministers plan to introduce a mandatory levy on flutter firms to fund measures that combat addiction. 

Betting firms face a fresh gambling tax

Government insiders say Culture Secretary Michelle Donelan wants to “strike a balance” that lets punters enjoy a wager while helping problem gamblers. 

Stronger age verification is also on the cards in next month’s reforms among policies to stop youngsters becoming addicts. 

Measures targeting 18 to 24-year-olds in particular are being considered. 

And Premier League clubs are expected to voluntarily phase out betting ads from their shirts under the plans.

A 1 per cent mandatory levy on gambling yields has been called for by campaigners concerned about problem gambling.

GambleAware says it would raise £140million annually to fund treatment and prevention curbs.

Fears have been raised that overregulation of betting will drive punters into the gambling black market, which has seen a massive increase in recent years.

In a speech to the industry yesterday, Culture Minister Paul Scully said they will be “common sense changes”. 

He said the Gambling White Paper will be “preserving safeguards that do protect against gambling harm, but replacing unnecessarily restrictive controls with ones which make things better for customers and businesses.” 

A Government source said: “Gambling is enjoyed safely by millions of people, but for a minority, it can cause significant harm and lead to devastating consequences.

“It’s absolutely vital to look carefully at the details, so the proposals both protect the most vulnerable but equally are proportionate, and we make no apologies for taking the time to get this right.”