BGC urges government to support bookmakers
Michael Dugher, chief executive of the Betting and Gaming Council, has called on Rishi Sunak to deliver a “Budget for jobs” when he stands up in the House of Commons on Wednesday.
He said the regulated industry stood ready to help the Treasury as it sets about ensuring Britain builds back better from the Covid-19 pandemic.
Mr Dugher pointed to the huge economic contribution already made by the regulated betting and gaming industry, with a report earlier this year by EY revealing that BGC members support 119,000 jobs, generate £4.5bn in tax and contribute £7.7bn to the economy in gross value added.
They also help to fund horseracing to the tune of £350m through sponsorship, media rights and the betting levy, provide £40m for the English Football League and its clubs and millions more for rugby league, darts and snooker.
In addition, BGC members’ have pledged to create 5,000 apprenticeships by 2025 through their support for the Government’s Plan For Jobs.
The Chancellor will deliver the Budget on Wednesday against a backdrop of economic uncertainty as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Having been forced to close for months at a time during lockdown, land-based venues like betting shops and casinos are getting back on their feet and once again making a major contribution to the economy.
Mr Dugher said it was critical that Mr Sunak comes up with a Budget that supports hard-pressed high streets and the badly-hit hospitality sector, while promoting continued growth in Britain’s world-leading tech companies, including online betting and gaming firms.
He said: “Our members are ready, willing and able to assist in the post-pandemic economic recovery.
“They already support tens of thousands of jobs across the UK, helping to generate billions of pounds in revenue for the Treasury, and with ambitious plans for further expansion in the years to come.
“I therefore hope that the Chancellor delivers a Budget for jobs which will help to repair the damage done by Covid, sustain the economic recovery and – with the full support of the regulated betting and gaming industry – help Britain to build back better.”