Gibraltar gambling chief: “No need to hit the panic button”

Despite acknowledging that some of the larger gambling operators on the Rock are currently making redundancies, Andrew Lyman says he remains optimistic for the future of the igaming hub
The post Gibraltar gambling chief: “No need to hit the panic button” first appeared on EGR Intel.  

Gibraltar gambling commissioner Andrew Lyman has insisted that despite tough post-Brexit challenges and operators making redundancies on the peninsula, he remains optimistic for the sustainability and success of the igaming hub.

Speaking to GBC News, Lyman was pressed on operators’ streamlining plans, the impact of Brexit in terms of employment in Gibraltar and EU-facing business moving away.

The commissioner, who would have been pleased with Gibraltar’s removal from the FATF grey list this month, remained bullish on the future outlook for the British Overseas Territory.

He said: “I don’t think as a jurisdiction, we need to press the panic button. It is the right of all operators to optimise their business and plainly, if they’ve decided to withdraw some roles because there isn’t work for those particular people. that’s something we’ve not pushed back on.

“As I say, we do keep an eye on overall numbers and overall economic contribution including tax yield.”

Lyman added that operators had made adjustments in hiring policies for customer service-level roles, before championing Gibraltar as a home to “middle-ranking and C-level” individuals.

When pressed on the ongoing fallout from Brexit, with Gibraltar sharing a border with Spain, Lyman responded by admitting that a non-negotiated outcome would have a negative impact because there would be a need for companies to undertake continuity planning.

He said: “It would be difficult for people to cross the border at nine and five, but actually a lot of the businesses already have continuity plans. I don’t think if there was a no negotiated outcome, you would see the businesses surrendering their licences and walking off the Rock but they would have to make continuity arrangements and they would have to flex and we may see some jobs being put in other jurisdictions. But hopefully it won’t come to that because there’s still hope.”

The commissioner insisted that despite losing EU-facing business, there was an opportunity for operators to base rest of the world operations out of Gibraltar, with Lyman revealing those conversations had already taken place.

Asked what the Gambling Commission was doing to attract new business, Lyman highlighted that around 72% of jobs were UK-facing and that there was an understanding why operators have relocated their EU licences to other jurisdictions.

Lyman said: “I think the future is encouraging companies to bring their rest of the world business to Gibraltar. There are companies that I’ve spoken to are keen to do that.

“There are companies here who are expanding their rest of the world business and there are UK companies who are considering relocating to Gibraltar using their UK customer base as a starting point, and then looking at expanding into rest of the world market.

“Those companies have to comply with Gibraltar regulation but I’m quite focused on looking at growth opportunities as is the minister and we think running a rest of the world business from Gibraltar is a great opportunity.

“Although we never do a hard sell, those underlying factors that have always made Gibraltar attractive, still remain and I am very optimistic for the future as far as that’s concerned,” he concluded.

The post Gibraltar gambling chief: “No need to hit the panic button” first appeared on EGR Intel.


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