In Gaming - Pokies by Clyde Mooney

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A report by the Centre for International Economics offers perspective on the economics behind the industry of EGMs in Australia.

The Centre for International Economics (CIE) is a private research agency that consults and conducts economic research for governments, international agencies, corporations, industry and individuals.

It was commissioned by the Gaming Technologies Association to estimate the economic contribution of electronic gaming machines (EGMs) to the Australian economy.

Data was collected from publicly available sources, as well as a survey distributed to domestic manufacturers.

Two broad areas were identified as impacted by the business of EGMs:

  1. Recreational – use of the machines in licensed premises by the public
  2. Manufacture – servicing, maintenance, and production for sale in Australia and overseas

Number of people per EGM per State

Figures relating to the manufacturing aspect were provided directly by industry via a survey developed by CIE.

Note: the researchers included stipulation that the results do not include economy-wide impacts, such as indirect employment by the industry(s), social costs from problem gambling or consumer surplus benefits.

What was found was significant value-add from the industry of EGMs, not far behind the Food & Beverage Services sector, which is second only to Retail Trade.

In FY17, gaming machines contributed $8.32 billion to the Australian economy in value added.

Across all industries, direct employment is 46,660 people, equivalent to 24,150 full-time jobs.

Exports amounted to $284 million, coming from international visitors playing machines, and the sale of machines overseas.

State and Commonwealth tax revenue totalled $5.5 billion, stemming from gaming and payroll tax at the State level, and GST and company tax collected at the Federal level, based on EGM expenditure in 2016-17 of $12.3 billion in clubs and hotels, and $1.4 billion in casinos.