New Zealand Gambling Spending Falls

In New Zealand, gambling spending is on the decline. According to statistics released by the Department of Internal Affairs, Kiwis spent 4% less on gambling than they had in the previous year. Local responsible gambling advocates have taken this to mean that residents are becoming more aware of the potential harms of gambling.

As a result of the fall in spending, several other gambling-related numbers have taken a dive. For example, the number of gaming license holders has fallen to 353 from 359 in 2012. The total number of pokies has also declined. In 2012, there were 18 001 pokies; now, there are just 17 542.

While a decline in spending may be negative for gaming clubs and the gambling industry as a whole, it is positive thing for local residents. Over the course of the past few years, gambling addiction numbers have climbed to an all-time high in New Zealand. Local politicians have been working hard to reduce problem gambling rates, and their efforts are paying off.

The introduction of MP Te Ururoa Flavell’s Harm Reduction Bill seems to have alerted locals to the harms of gambling. The bill has received a great deal of media attention, and it is likely to have discouraged some punters from wagering on pokies in the past year.

Pokies Spending in New Zealand Declines

Across New Zealand, politicians are throwing their support behind a new Harm Reduction Bill. This newly proposed legislation aims to reduce the potential harm that can be caused by pokies, by reducing the overall number of pokies in the country. Although the bill has yet to be passed, it seems to be working already, as Kiwis are spending less on poker machines.

According to statistics, pokies spending in New Zealand has dropped by 3.1% across the country. In 2011, New Zealand pokie players spent $866 million and these numbers dropped to $844 million by the time 2012 had ended.

Gaming experts speculate that the decline in pokies spending is likely due to the Harm Reduction Bill. Even though its provisions have yet to take effect, the bill has received a great deal of press in the local media. It has brought attention to the potential harms of poker machine gambling and it seems that this news alone was enough to get many residents to adjust their spending habits.

The drop in spending could also be attributed to the overall decline in poker machines across New Zealand. 463 pokies were removed from the community in 2012, as a result of local sinking lid policies. With fewer pokies to play, some residents are likely to have stopped playing altogether, contributing to the decline in spending.