Changes to FOBT limits could be six months away

The maximum stake reduction on fixed-odds betting terminals in the UK could come in April 2019, to coincide with the new tax year.

In September, the UK government told Gambling Insider there would be no delay to plans on reducing maximum limits on FOBTs from £100 to £2, and reports suggest the reduction could happen a year sooner than the rumoured April 2020.

The Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport said: “We will make the legislative change required as soon as possible.”

The UK has more than 33,000 of the machines in place, following the product’s launch in 1999. In the year ending September 2017, B2 machines generated £1.8bn gross gaming yield for  operators in Great Britain.  

Discussing the need for a change to FOBTs, a Treasury spokesperson said: “We are changing the rules, so they balance the needs of vulnerable people, those who gamble responsibly, and people who work in this sector.

“But we must get this right, and are engaging with the industry, to ensure it has sufficient time to implement these technological changes.”