BGC chief: Casino reopenings "vital" to repairing Covid-19 damage to UK's finances

By Gambling Insider

From Monday, more than 100 casinos across England, Scotland and Wales will be able to open their doors for the first time this year.

Returning customers will still have to comply with anti-Covid measures, such as using hand sanitisers, wearing face masks and social distancing.

For Scottish gamblers, casinos will close at 10:30pm and are not allowed to sell alcohol. Meanwhile, casinos in Glasgow remain closed as First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, keeps the area under level three restrictions.

Just last month, betting shops were allowed to open in England; they were not allowed to show live sports, but from Monday this restriction will be lifted.

In Britain, casinos directly employ 11,600 people and, in the year before the pandemic, they contributed to £500m ($705m) to the Treasury in tax.  

According to an Ernst and Young report, betting shops across the UK support 46,000 jobs and pay around £1bn a year in tax.

Overall, the regulated betting and gaming industry provides the UK economy with £7.7bn.

Betting and Gaming Council Chief Executive Michael Dugher has commented: “It’s great news that most of the UK’s casinos are finally able to re-open and is a testament to the hard work staff have put in making them Covid-secure.

“As well as providing excellent entertainment for their customers, casinos are a major contributor to the UK economy, something which will be vital in the months ahead as the Government tries to repair the damage done to the nation’s finances by Covid-19.

“I am also delighted that the restrictions imposed on betting shops are being lifted. Their safe re-opening in April has been a huge success and this is further reward for the efforts they have made to ensure their premises are Covid-secure.”

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