Australians Hate those Exchanges
By dave
Wagering giant TAB Ltd yesterday lauded the government's push to ban online betting exchanges, saying it was time to crack down on 'parasites' who returned nothing to the industry.

UK-based betting exchange Betfair said the push robbed punters of competitive odds and was about protecting TABs.

NSW Minister for Gaming and Racing Grant McBride yesterday called for the ban following the release of a state-by-state report by the Betting Exchange Task Force.

He said the task force, whose report had not yet been made public, confirmed his original views that licences should not be awarded to betting exchanges.

'The task force has confirmed my original views that the introduction of betting exchanges in Australia will have serious repercussions for our racing industry,' McBride said in a statement.

McBride said he would recommend the federal government amend its Interactive Gaming Act to ban betting exchanges from operating in Australia.

Betfair's director of communications Mark Davies said the exchange would have no problem returning funds to the industry but being licensed was a precondition for that.

'This represents a raw deal for the average Australian punter who should be entitled to competitive odds, the transparency of an online wagering environment and the integrity afforded by Betfair's unparalleled electronic audit trail,' Mr Davies said in a statement.

Davies rejected attacks Betfair was dodging industry payments. 'Betfair views itself as a long-term player in the Australian wagering sector and has commenced detailed discussions with local racing organisations on the payment of industry fees,' he said.

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