[Mr. David Wilshire in the Chair] — Online Gambling

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 9:55 am on 18th March 2009.

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Photo of Ian Gibson Ian Gibson Labour, Norwich North 9:55 am, 18th March 2009

I thank the hon. Gentleman. Yes, there has to be a way forward, but people must contribute. These sports organisations stay in the shadows, and I understand why. They have real problems in getting intelligence systems, research, monitoring of betting activity, legal and compliance functions, disciplinary arrangements, education and training, rulebook amendments, the media and Government liaison to work together. They need help to come out of the shadows and to be perfect organisations for the sport itself.

Online gambling has changed sport dramatically. It still has to emerge from the shadows to be part and parcel of the great sporting activities in which people indulge. However, it can do that only by sharing what goes on; betting and sport must become truly intertwined. I doubt whether we will get rid of these classic cases—there will always be one or two—but there are too many opportunities to fix matches now, and we have to stop that. The way to do so is to get organisations together to support the people who do the intelligence work and keep the sport intact, and the Government can do that quite quickly.