AFTER more than six years of Jockey Club lobbying, the Home Affairs Bureau in Hong Kong has decided to back the two-way combining of betting pools with foreign jurisdictions, allowing overseas punters access to the larger and more attractive pools here.
The system, known as commingling, would mean a boost of HK$200 million a year in revenue for the government on top of more than HK$10 billion it currently receives in duty from the Jockey Club.
At the moment, racing fans in Australia, for example, can watch and bet on Hong Kong’s races, but their money goes into a small Australian pool. Under a commingling agreement, Australian betting operators would send those bets to the much larger and more attractive pools in Hong Kong. The same would apply to jurisdictions around the globe, like South Africa.
The Betting Duty (Amendment) Bill will be put to the Legislative Council in the second quarter of this year, with the new set-up to start in time for the 2013-14 season in September. – South China Morning Post.
(Photo from The Telegraph, UK, per illustration).