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  • The Government of Jamaica is moving ahead with plans to merge the Jamaica Racing Commission (JRC) and the Betting Gaming and Lotteries Commission (BGLC).
  • Minister of Finance and Planning, Dr. the Hon. Peter Phillips, made the disclosure during the sitting of the House of Representatives on Tuesday, October 28.
  • Dr. Phillips said the process will initially involve fusing the companies’ “management operations and their backroom operations.”

The Government of Jamaica is moving ahead with plans to merge the Jamaica Racing Commission (JRC) and the Betting Gaming and Lotteries Commission (BGLC).

Minister of Finance and Planning, Dr. the Hon. Peter Phillips, made the disclosure during the sitting of the House of Representatives on Tuesday, October 28.

“The merger of the Jamaica Racing Commission and the Betting Gaming and Lotteries Commission is being effected as we speak,” he informed.

Dr. Phillips said the process will initially involve fusing the companies’ “management operations and their backroom operations.”

“There are some legislative amendments that are necessary to effect the complete merger of the two entities and I expect that to be concluded shortly. But, they are going to move operations to a single location, they are going to share the critical administrative staff and that is underway now,” he pointed out.

The entities are being merged to create a properly funded regulatory authority for the gaming and horse racing sectors.

Amalgamation of the companies is in line with recommendations made by the Public Sector Transformation Unit to condense operations for efficiency and to achieve greater cost savings.

The JRC was established in December 1972 to oversee the horse racing industry. Its planned merger with the BGLC, which regulates and controls the operations of betting and gaming, and the conduct of lotteries in the island, has been under consideration for many years.

In addition, Dr. Phillips informed that the Government is also moving ahead with plans to divest Caymanas Track Limited.

“It is a matter of some urgency because, quite frankly, there can be no justification for taking money out of the consolidated fund to try to maintain these institutions though we have done it thus far. We recognize that …it is a vibrant industry and it has potential for growth. So we are committed to maintaining the industry but as an independently operated operation,” he stated.

 

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