To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, with reference to the voluntary levy on the betting industry to support greyhound welfare, what progress the Government has made on encouraging bookmakers to join the scheme and secure contributions for revenue generated in (a) the UK and (b) offshore; and what further steps the Government plans to take to encourage more bookmakers to join that scheme.
With regard to those based in Great Britain, the Association of British Bookmakers has estimated that over 90% of all Licenced Betting Offices in Britain contribute to the voluntary levy.
Earlier this year I wrote to trade bodies representing the betting industry to ask that they take part in discussions to improve the current funding position in the greyhound industry, to be chaired by Lord Lipsey.
Lord Lipsey’s work is ongoing and Ladbrokes Coral have followed Bet 365 and recently announced that they will begin making voluntary contributions to the greyhound racing industry based on their offshore business from the start of 2018. This is a welcome boost to the sport which will strengthen the industry's ability to meet and exceed their commitments in relation to welfare and integrity and I would urge all betting operators who do not currently contribute to the voluntary levy to reconsider their position.