By Andrew Starke

Victoria’s gaming minister, Tony Robinson, has announced the online auction of gaming machine entitlements will start on 20 April 2010.

Robinson said registered hotels and clubs would bid for 10-year gaming machine entitlements in an online auction held over a series of rounds starting on 20 April 2010 and concluding on 10 May 2010 at a one day, final bidding round to be held at the former Melbourne Convention Centre.

“Under the post-2012 structure, venues will bid directly for 10-year gaming machine entitlements,” he said.

“The gaming machine industry has matured in Victoria, and the time is right to empower local venue operators to make local decisions about their gaming operations – giving them more responsibility and accountability within their local communities.”

Robinson said the online auction system had been purpose-built to allocate gaming machine entitlements in line with Government policies limiting machine numbers across Victoria.

“The online auction will encourage competition while ensuring entitlement allocation is consistent with regional caps and municipal limits on gaming machine numbers,” he said.

“The number of machines outside Crown Casino will remain fixed at 27,500, split evenly between clubs and hotels and with at least 20 per cent in country Victoria. The limit per venue will be maintained at 105 gaming machines.

“The Government will also enforce a cap on machine ownership to ensure no one venue operator can own more than 35 per cent of entitlements available to hotels.”

Registered bidders will be advised of their eligibility to participate in the auction shortly after 23 March 2010.

For more information about the restructure of Victoria’s gambling industry, click here.

The Shout Team

The leading online news service for Australia's beer, wine, spirits and hospitality industries.

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