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BGC seeks guarantee that casinos will receive Covid support package

The Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) has called on the UK government to offer reassurances that casinos will receive support if subject to further Covid-related restrictions.

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BGC Chief Exec Michael Dugher called casinos an “integral part” of Britain’s hospitality industry as he sought a guarantee from Westminster that any future measures will be accompanied by an appropriate support package.

“Casinos are a major economic contributor to UK plc, as well as an integral part of the hospitality industry,” said Dugher.

“After a gruelling 18 months, they have started to recover from the various impositions, including prolonged closures and travel bans, but they are now understandably concerned that further restrictions over Christmas and into the new year will have a significant impact on their recovery.”

While a return to lockdown-style restrictions has not yet been ordered, public health experts are advising people to avoid unnecessary contact and there are fears that hospitality venues could be impacted.

This has sparked cries for Chancellor Rishi Sunak to implement an economic support package for businesses, as he did earlier in the pandemic.

In a statement, the BGC highlighted casinos’ contribution to Britain’s economy, saying that some 11,600 people are employed at the country’s 120 venues, which pay £600m ($799m) in tax and generate £1.2bn in gross value added.

Dugher concluded: “Casinos, like many others in the hospitality industry, are simply seeking reassurances that if the pandemic requires yet more severe restrictions, that they will be adequately supported by government.”

This came after the BGC published a report outlining the gambling industry’s contributions to communities, the economy and sport.


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