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Hong Kong Commingling Set To Become Reality
The recent passing of the Betting Duty (Amendment) Bill 2013 by the HK Legislative Council will open the Hong Kong Jockey Club betting pools for commingling. The new legislation removes the existing betting duty structure that was applicable to non-local bets on Hong Kong racing, and thus eliminates the odds differences between local and non-local betting pools. It is hoped that this will help combat offshore and illegal gambling on Hong Kong racing. The HKJC is in discussions with various overseas partners, including Australia, to offer commingled pools on racing at Sha Tin and Happy Valley. HKJC Chairman T Brian Stevenson stated, "Commingling will help avoid the erosion of government revenue from illegal and offshore operators. Nevertheless the Government, the Club and the community at large must stay on the alert to maintain the fight against illegal gambling." CEO of the HKJC Winfried Engelbrecht-Bresges noted: "To reinforce our effort in taking Hong Kong horse racing to the global stage and allow racing jurisdictions to work together to tackle the common challenge of illegal bookmaking, we recommended in 2007 during the Asian Racing Conference in Dubai the implementation of international industry practice of commingling."