Wednesday, 8 February 2017
Interactive Gambling Amendment Bill 2016; Consideration in Detail
We had our initial gambling ministers meeting late last year, and at that meeting there was in-principle support provided for the 11 points of the National Consumer Protection Framework, of which the prohibition of lines of credit as well as the national self-exclusion register are the two central features. We have another meeting scheduled in early March—if my memory serves me correctly; it may even be later this month—where we will be moving forward again on that. One of the questions which we are discussing cooperatively amongst the ministers is: what is the best way of implementing the National Consumer Protection Framework? At the moment, most of these measures are contained within state and territory based legislation, so one way that it could be done is that we all agree that these have to be introduced, and states and territories will be responsible for implementing those measures. Another way that it could be done is that the federal parliament could introduce such measures in national legislation as well, at least setting a strong minimum benchmark, and then the states and territories would still have those regulatory powers. A further option would be for there to be a national regulator. All those three things have been discussed. It has not been settled upon yet, but there is an absolutely firm determination from this government that we will be introducing those measures and that we will do so as quickly as possible but going through a proper consultation process. We think that is the responsible course of action.