The United Kingdom and France have been lauded by international sports betting integrity body ESSA, for its ‘Declaration of Intention’ to target suspicious betting practises.
The governments of the two nations are to share expertise and best practises, in order help to tackle issues such as sports corruption and match-fixing through illegal and irregular sports betting.
As part of the agreement the UK is to share experience gained from hosting the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, as well as the Rugby World Cup in 2015.
France are due to host the Rugby World Cup in 2023, with its capital city Paris welcoming the world for the Olympics and Paralympics a year later.
Khalid Ali, Secretary General of ESSA, explained: “The UK and France should be commended for agreeing the joint Declaration of Intention to tackle sports corruption and match-fixing through illegal and irregular sports betting.
“Both countries have put integrity as a priority issue and have developed what are widely regarded as best practice models in this area. The move further strengthens their information sharing protocols and can only benefit the integrity of their respective betting markets and sporting events.
“ESSA has consistently promoted increased international cooperation as a vital component in the eradication of match-fixing. The association therefore welcomes this important initiative which builds upon the work of the Council of Europe established Group of Copenhagen Network of National Platforms, seeking to develop and establish common tools in the fight against the manipulation of sports competitions, which both the UK and France are members of.
“ESSA encourages other nations to follow the example of the UK and France and place international cooperation and information sharing at the forefront of their betting integrity policies. ESSA remains committed to working with the Gambling Commission and ARJEL through our information sharing agreements and to working with all responsible parties to share our knowledge and expertise in this area.”
ESSA, whose members include bet365, Ladbrokes Coral and Paddy Power Betfair, is currently involved in four match fixings projects simultaneously.