Live betting on sports online banned until next Australian federal election

Online betting on live sports will be banned until the next federal election, local media reports.

The in-play betting ban means that bookmakers offering the “click to call” and other live betting systems, including William Hill, Ladbrokes and Bet365, will be shut down.

According to The Australian, the government has not yet decided whether it will permanently ban in-play online betting and says they will revisit the issue after the election.

Recently, Tabcorp and Tatts Group argued the legalization of in-play betting in the country will further unbalance the playing field, in terms of taxation, by revealing how much they pay to the government and sporting bodies in taxes and licensing fees compared to their foreign-owned, NT licensed counterparts.

Corporate bookmakers in Australia have been pushing for full liberalization of in-play, arguing the move will help stem the flow of money to illegal offshore operators.

However, others argue the move will bring about problem gambling and, for the racing industry, a drift away from wagering on races to sport.

Coalition MPs who were briefed by Human Services Minister Alan Tudge were reportedly broadly supportive of the general direction the minister had taken.

The MPs were told the government would take a three stage approach, first with consumer protection, then addressing the issue of offshore bookmakers and, finally, to make a decision on the liberalization of in-play sports betting.