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UK Casino Sector To Suffer Post-Brexit

Mia Gardner | 09 Mar 2020

The United Kingdom shook the world with its decision to go through with Brexit, as it was a decision that will have major, long lasting implications. The country is already in the process of formulating new regulations on a wide variety of topics, but will enough consideration be given to the casino sector?

This is the question being asked by the country’s trade association, who are suggesting that the casino sector is in for some extremely turbulent waters. The main reason given for the turbulence is the new immigration rules, which are set to completely change what is required in order to obtain a work visa in the United Kingdom. Ultimately, the trade association is suggesting, the new rules may just cripple casino operations, as well as the hospitality and tourism sectors.

Points-Based System

 The UK is adopting a points-based system. Under the system, those looking to obtain a work visa will be given points based on their level of education, as well as their familiarity with the English language. If an applicant fails to obtain enough points, they are denied a visa.

The UK Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) have stated that when this system comes into effect on the 1st January a huge number of currently working casino croupiers may well find themselves in a difficult situation. It elaborated by pointing out that over 70% of all croupiers are foreigners and may well be faced with having to vacate their jobs. Though how many is nothing more than speculation at this time.

A Warning

The BGC pulled no punches in making their case, saying that the casino sector was extremely important for the local economy, bringing in millions of high value tourists from the Middle East, China, and elsewhere in the world. As many as 14,000 employees find their employment in gambling organisations, with an additional 4,000 indirectly related to the industry. Plus, around £300 million is contributed by way of tax.

The BGC concluded by stating that the casino industry could not suffer yet another blow, with new regulations already having drastic, far reaching consequences, and forcing local operations to lose ground against rapidly growing foreign competition.

A suggestion put forward is that the local gambling and hospitality industries be exempt from the new points-based system rules. But if this comes to pass remains to be seen. In the meantime, tensions are already running high.

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