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Monday, 20 March 2017
Page: 1466

Senator XENOPHON (South Australia) (20:57): I have a number of questions for the minister before amendments are dealt with. I make reference, perhaps as a reference point, to the Senate Environment and Communications Legislation Committee's report on this bill. The minister's second reading speech on the bill explained:

The review—

the O'Farrell review, as it is known, into the Interactive Gambling Act—

found that the amount of money being spent on illegal wagering services could be as high as $400 million annually with a further $100 million in lost taxation revenue and product fees.

There does not seem to be any firm view on the amount of money actually lost. Some figures you hear are $500 million and other figures go much higher than that. Does the Commonwealth have the ability to be more specific about these figures? For instance, if it obtained the cooperation of banks in terms of other mechanisms of measuring the amount that goes offshore—because presumably most of these transactions are occurring using credit cards and other discernible transactions—surely there ought to be some way of measuring more accurately the extent of the problem of these illegal offshore gambling sites.