New Zealand Gambling Spending Expected to Increase

In New Zealand, health experts are concerned that gambling spending will continue to increase over the course of the next few years. Despite politicians’ efforts to reduce the potential harms of gambling, experts believe that Kiwis will continue to spend more money on betting, pokies and the lottery.

The experts believe that lottery spending will increase by 8% from now until 2016. The expansion of the local lottery has encouraged more players to spend more money on tickets for draws as well as instant win games, and that trend will continue in the future. The offer of bigger and better jackpots worth multimillions will also ensure that lottery spending continues to rise.

Casino gambling is another major concern, with the team of researchers expecting spending to increase by 2.3% from now until 2016. There is an increasing number of gambling opportunities for players, especially with the news that SkyCity Auckland will be receiving 230 new poker machines as part of its convention centre deal. This will result in an increase of 8% on the number of pokies in New Zealand casinos, which is expected to lead to a rise in gambling spending as well as problem gambling rates.

New Zealanders Lose $250 Million on Pokies

In a recent report, it has been revealed that New Zealanders have lost $250 million on poker machines over the course of the last year. This statistics have come as a shock to the local community, especially since Sky City has been granted the right to install 350 to 500 new poker machines in return for building the city’s new convention centre.

The New Zealand Problem Gambling Foundation released these numbers, illustrating that problem gambling is becoming a serious issue in the country’s biggest city. What is more concerning, however, is that only a small portion of the money lost on poker machines is actually pumped back into the community.

According to the report, between $55 million and $95 million is returned to the community, less than 50% of the profits generated by poker machines. Of that, most of the money is presented to sports-related organizations, which receive $21 million in funding. Arts and community services receive less than $5 million combined.

As such, now seems to be the perfect time for the upcoming gambling study. It will examine the social impact of poker machines and poker machine funding for charities, providing some much-needed insight on the market.

New Lotto Offerings Encourage Increased Spending

The New Zealand Lotteries Commission has seen a huge increase in profits over the course of the past year. In 2011, residents spent $926 million on the local lottery, an 18% increase over 2010’s total.

The lottery commission has taken this as a sign of encouragement and hopes to increase its profits further over the course of 2012. However, the NZ Problem Gambling Foundation does not believe that the commission should take this route. The organization believes that residents should not be encouraged to gamble during a time of economic crisis.

The two entities also disagree on the cause of the massive increase in profits. While the Lotteries Commission believes that its new and improved gaming options have boosted revenue, the Problem Gambling Foundation believes that the recession is behind the phenomenon.

More alarming still, is the fact that these numbers do not include all forms of gambling across New Zealand. Money spent at online casinos and other gaming venues have not been included, meaning that New Zealanders could be spending billions of dollars overall on gambling activities.