Initial Sector Consultation - Future of Electronic Monitoring

13 November 2019

This week Clubs New Zealand staff were invited to meet with members of the DIAs project management team, as well as an independent lawyer to discuss the future of the Electronic Monitoring System.

Earlier this year the DIA formally established a project to examine options for the future of electronic monitoring in New Zealand’s class 4 industry.  This project is part of the Departments work to ensure that DIA can be an effective, modern regulator into the future, and achieve one of our key objectives of maintaining integrity in the gambling system.

Clubs New Zealand believes that the current EMS system, despite its age, is still functional.  In our opinion there is no need for the Department to be spending a large amount of money introducing a new, more elaborate system.  We strongly believe that the number one priority must be cost reduction and any new system should result in cost reduction, not a cost increase.

It would be devastating for the club sector if a new communication protocol was introduced that required all existing gaming machines to be upgraded.  The cost of undertaking this is likely to be similar to the costs incurred in installing player information displays.  Further, older machines (of which many clubs have) may not be capable of being upgraded to a new communication protocol, requiring clubs to purchase entirely new gaming machines.

Clubs New Zealand has acknowledged that the current system could use some improvements, but we do not believe this requires an entirely new system and these improvements could be achieved with little to no cost.  These include the ability to undertake game changes instantly and the ability for new venue licences to be issued without a 24-hour stand down period.

As this is early days we anticipate much more discussion taking place on the future of electronic monitoring.  We will keep you updated on any progress or news as it becomes available.

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