Betfair Australia withdraws from offering wagering on Japanese racing

Betfair Australia has advised customers that it will no longer offer wagering on Japanese wagering. In a statement on the exchange said that the Japan Racing Association had said that they would withdraw broadcast vision from Australia and as well 'potentially restricting horses from racing in Australia' if Betfair continued to offer markets on Japanese racing.

"We launched Japanese racing on the exchange in March 2020 in order to continue meeting the needs and interests of our customers and punters during what was a time of unprecedented uncertainty for racing, and we know many punters love the product," said Betfair Australia.

"Unfortunately, the HKJC and JRA still have a view that a betting exchange poses risk to the integrity of a race given “a customer can back a horse to lose” (Lay).

"Although we strongly disagree with the HKJC and JRA, for reasons expanded on below, and whilst we have never been in breach of any legal or regulatory requirements in offering these markets, we have made the difficult decision to pull these markets."

This is the second Asian market that Betfair has withdrawn from with the exchange launching and then withdrawing from offering wagering on Hong Kong racing in September 2019.

The statement said; "Betfair has world-class integrity tools that are made available to all racing bodies with which we have entered into a product fee and integrity agreement. These tools include real-time access to transactions and price movements on the Betfair Exchange – and ask any steward that uses these, and they will confirm they’re an invaluable tool in monitoring the integrity of a race. Further Betfair has an inhouse Integrity Team (comprised of 8 full-time employees) with every bet on the Betfair Betting Exchange being tracked and recorded.

"Betfair representatives have sat side by side with representatives of racing bodies at Asian Racing Conferences and other integrity conferences talking about the risks that illegal betting exchanges (such as Citibet and Turf7) pose. These include integrity, due to their lack of transparency; to funding, due to their lack of contribution back to racing; to customers, through their lack of player protections; and finally risks posed in relation to money laundering."