Home Features Less bookmakers but more profit for gambling businesses in Scotland
Why the gambling industry in Scotland is both valuable and prevalent
On the streets of Scotland, there were once over 1000 high street bookmakers but in recent years that number has fallen. This isn’t indicative of the gambling industry as a whole however, as the stakes here are higher than ever.
The statistics of the Scottish gambling industry
The gambling industry in Scotland is both valuable and prevalent. While part of this is down to problem gambling, plenty of gamblers experience a simple and responsible time when they choose to gamble.
Around 65% of adults in the UK choose to gamble, though a third of this is purely based on the National Lottery. When we exclude the lottery, only around 43% of adults can be counted as having gambled. Since the minimum age of The National Lottery is just 16, whereas hard gambling has a minimum age of 18, the pool of potential players is larger.
From High Street bookmakers to online
Traditional bookmakers are in decline, especially on our high streets. This is down to a combination of factors, including an increase in competition as well as a generally more difficult economic climate. While the rates increase as do the overheads, many of the competition are choosing to move online.
There are a wealth of betting options online, from online casinos like the ones on www.newcasinosonline.co to online bookmakers. They don’t have the same running costs as a premises and they’re taking up more of the market than ever before.
The effect on the economy
While online revenue continues to grow, this has a pretty poor effect on the economy. While there are more site owners and the wealth is spread, instead of being concentrated on one large bookmaker, there are fewer staff. There is a high point of consumption tax to consider however, which does feed money back into the economy.
It is all about policing the gambling industry these days however, as problem gamblers must be assisted in making the right choices. This has led to the introduction and growth of exclusion schemes and other responsible gambling pilots.
Glasgow seems to be far more effected by this than Edinburgh, prompting serious talks on the use of fixed odds betting terminals (FOBTs). Many feel that these installations in betting shops just make it too easy to spend without the guidance of a real person. In betting shops, those that work there can prevent a customer from betting if they feel that it’s getting out of hand, but with fixed odds betting terminals there’s far less control.
This battle against FOBTs will continue as we go through the process of devolution, as this has become a political matter for Scotland. This has become a charged issue as lawmakers in Scotland feel they want more control over the issues that affect their country most. This affects the economy and benefits of the country and it’s safe to say that they want to be able to put protections in place.
The gambling industry has a rich and storied history in the UK, with some betting shops going back to the late 1800s. They won’t be going anywhere soon, though the industry will no doubt go through a series of changes over the coming years. Regulation aims to give the Scottish people the fun of the game, without as many of the risks.