A little over a week ago, Rishi Sunak – Chancellor of the Exchequer – announced a set of measures to help businesses that are most heavily affected by the pandemic including all retail, leisure, and hospitality companies as exempt from paying business rates for 12 months. After receiving a harsh criticism from the Betting and Gaming Council, it was then decided to also include gambling services.
Before this decision, the Business Rates Local Authority Guidance considered casinos, bingo houses, betting shops, and gambling clubs to be financial services, and not leisure, which made them ineligible for this form of relief. The BGC called this categorization ‘bizarre’ as casinos and gambling sites provide entertainment and food and drink to millions of visitors each year.
The CEO of the BGC, Michael Dugher expressed his satisfaction with the new course that the government is taking and stated how this measure will help protect thousands of jobs in the gambling industry across the UK.
He further commented: “Our industry will, in turn, do its absolute upmost to help with the fight against the virus and play our part in this historic national effort, including offering up staff and premises to help.”
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