Gambling: Advertising

Department for Culture, Media and Sport written question – answered at on 27 February 2024.

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Photo of Iain Duncan Smith Iain Duncan Smith Conservative, Chingford and Woodford Green

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, whether her Department will consider make an assessment of the potential merits of a precautionary approach to gambling advertising.

Photo of Stuart Andrew Stuart Andrew Assistant Whip, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport), Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade) (Minister for Equalities)

In our approach to gambling advertising, we have struck a balanced and evidence-led approach which tackles aggressive advertising that is most likely to appeal to children, while recognising that advertising is an entirely legitimate commercial practice for responsible gambling firms.

Earlier this year, HM Government published a White Paper on gambling which outlined a comprehensive package of reforms to make gambling safer following an exhaustive assessment of the evidence, including on gambling advertising. We concluded that further action on advertising was needed, which is why we and the Gambling Commission are introducing measures to tackle the most aggressive and harmful advertising practices by preventing bonuses being constructed and targeted in harmful ways, giving customers more control over the marketing they receive, and introducing messaging about the risks associated with gambling.

This supplements the already robust rules in place to ensure that gambling advertising is socially responsible and that it cannot be targeted at or strongly appeal to children. This includes specific licence conditions for operators, including the requirement to abide by the UK Advertising Codes, which further regulate how gambling operators advertise. The UK Advertising Codes were strengthened in 2022, with new protections for children and vulnerable adults.

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