Casino gambling remains popular in Australia despite tough regulations
Australia has been cracking down on gambling laws, but playing casino games remains a popular leisure activity in the country, more so than any other nation in the world. Statistics show that during the financial year from 1 July 2022 to 30 June 2023, approximately 73% of adults spent money on some form of wagering, with two in five people gambling weekly. The casino gaming industry generated revenues of AU$5.8 billion in Australia, primarily from physical gaming activities such as brick-and-mortar casino venues and electronic gaming machines.
However, online gambling revenues are harder to track because of the strict regulations on online gambling in Australia. Obtaining licenses for casino operators is a lengthy and complicated process, and the Interactive Gambling Act 2001 has banned most online gambling activities. Despite the stringent regulations, the popularity of online gaming has soared, with millions of enthusiasts turning their attention to online venues.
The Victorian government, for example, introduced new restrictions for poker machines, including carded play and AU$100 pre-commitment limits. Venues hosting pokies must also close between the hours of 4am and 10am, with the exception of the Crown Melbourne resort. While these measures aim to reduce problem gambling, they have been met with criticism from operators of physical gaming venues.
Increased regulations on physical casino gaming venues have led to a surge in online gaming. As a result, finding safe and legitimate online venues in Australia has become more challenging. Experts have observed a shift to online gambling and predict that the industry will continue to achieve consistent growth, with projections indicating the online gambling market will be worth almost AU$17 billion by the end of 2023.
Despite the strict regulations, the demand for safe and quality casino games in Australia remains strong. The gambling industry is projected to be worth more than AU$20 billion by 2027, suggesting that, regardless of the regulations, the popularity of gambling in Australia will continue to grow. Balancing regulation with consumer demand for safe and quality casino games will be crucial for the future of the industry.