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Hammond’s 2020 Vision Comes Under Fire

Wednesday 20th June 2018

MPs, including Iain Duncan Smith are calling the Chancellor Philip Hammond ‘morally reprehensible’ for delaying the reduction in FOBT stakes until 2020.

Politicians and industry pundits are astounded by the reported delay in implementing the £2 stake, according to a report in today’s Guardian newspaper.

A letter, seen by the Guardian, criticises the Treasury for prioritising the duty collected from the machines, worth more than £600m a year, over problem gambling.

“On the losses from taxation revenue: firstly it is morally reprehensible that the government is propping up its finances through taking revenue from FOBTs,” said members of the cross-party group on FOBTs, led by Labour’s Carolyn Harris.

They pointed out that the Treasury already expects to make up any tax shortfall by increasing duty on online gambling from April 2019.

“It is not therefore justifiable to continue to gain revenue from FOBTs for a further year when an alternative revenue stream will have been put in place,” says the letter, which is understood to have the support of more than 30 MPs and members of the House of Lords.

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