UK Gambling Commission appoint Neil McArthur as CEO

By Harrison Sayers

The UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) has announced the appointment of Neil McArthur as its new CEO.

McArthur has been acting as interrim CEO since February, following the departure of  Sarah Harrison MBE. The UKGC had been conducting a search for Harrison's replacement, but it now seems that McArthur has done enough to make the role his own.  

The appointment falls in line with the UKGC’s main agenda of creating a ‘fairer and safer’ gambling market, as McArthur is a lawyer by trade and well experienced in legal matters; he previously worked as the head in-house lawyer for various public bodies, including the General Teaching Council for England’s legal team. McArthur had also previously served as the Commissions’ Chief Council and Executive Director before Harrison’s departure for the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.

Commenting on the appointment, Bill Moyes, Chair of the  Gambling Commission said that “Neil’s appointment is great news for the Commission. He brings to the role a thorough understanding of gambling issues and regulation, along with proven commitment to making gambling fairer and safer.  I’m looking forward to working even more closely with Neil as he leads the Commission to make significant progress in raising standards, protecting consumers and the public from gambling related harm and improving the performance of the National Lottery.’’

New Gambling Commission CEO Neil McArthur added: “I’m looking forward to the challenge that lies ahead to make gambling fairer and safer. I am really proud of the Commission’s achievements over the last 12 years, but there is a lot more to do."

It has been a busy period for the Gambling Commission, who published their guidance to government on fixed odds betting terminals in March, recommending  maximum stake reductions for both slots based and casino based terminals. In addition later in the month, it announced sweeping new regulations covering the world of online gambling, with an ethos of making it safer for players.

Speaking about the commissions agenda, McArthur added: “Ensuring consumers are empowered to make informed choices about gambling while addressing and reducing the harms that can come from gambling is a challenge that cannot be overcome by us alone. It needs continued strong partnerships with other regulators, consumer representatives and government. Most importantly, it requires gambling operators to treat their customers fairly and they can expect us to be tough but fair in making sure they meet their responsibilities.”

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