An advisory body to the Australian government has recommended that the country liberalize online gambling laws, a move that will no doubt be applauded by pro-gambling campaigners across the Tasman, where online gambling is similarly in a state of partial legalization.
Australian citizens, like their Kiwi counterparts, are not specifically banned from gambling online. However, the Australian federal government's 2001 Interactive Gambling Act made it illegal for companies to offer online gambling in Australia, similar to laws in New Zealand that have banned online gambling providers from entering the local market.
But with the latest recommendation, which will be strongly taken into account by the Australian government, Australia could be on its way to finally overturning those old laws and fully legalizing online gambling.
Although Kiwis and Aussies share a healthy rivalry that often stops the citizens of one country admitting that the other country has got it right, pro-gambling advocates in New Zealand will no doubt be watching developments in Australia closely in the hope that New Zealand follows suit and re-examines its online gambling laws.