|According to documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act, UK government ministers have drawn up plans to turn the UK into a ‘World Leader’ in Internet gambling.|
The internal documents show that the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), has lobbied the Treasury on behalf of online betting and gaming firms to introduce a favourable tax regime, when the current ban on online gambling businesses in the UK is lifted next year.
Over the past two years, ministers and officials at the department have met representatives of the internet gambling industry on 26 occasions, seemingly keen to attract offshore companies to Britain.
At the end of the month, Tessa Jowell, the culture secretary, will host an international summit of politicians at Ascot racecourse to discuss regulatory standards, with officials from the United Nations, the European Commission and the major credit card companies also being invited.
Among the documents released by the Treasury was a briefing note for the minister in charge of gambling, Richard Caborn prior to his meeting with Betfair managing director, Mark Davies.
The note read, “It is government-wide policy, and that includes HMT (Her Majesty’s Treasury), that Britain should become a world leader in the field of online gambling, in order to provide our citizens with the opportunity to gambling (sic) in a safe, well-regulated environment.”