The Department of Internal Affairs

Te Tari Taiwhenua | Department of Internal Affairs

Building a safe, prosperous and respected nation


December 2020 shows record high spending at pokie machines

12 March 2021

The latest quarterly statistics published by Te Tari Taiwhenua Department of Internal Affairs (DIA) show a significant increase in Gaming Machine Profits (GMP) in the last months of 2020.

Quarterly GMP for December 2020 ($252 million) was the highest quarterly figure documented since records began in 2007. The next highest was December 2007 at $245 million followed by September 2019 at $244 million.

The headline statistics for the December 2020 quarter show:

  • GMP decreased by 13.6 percent from December 2019 to December 2020.
  • 2020 also saw a reduction in gaming machines and venues, with 75 fewer machines and 12 fewer venues.
  • GMP increased by 3.7 percent ($9m) in the September to December 2020 quarter

Overall, 2020 saw 13.6% decrease in yearly Gaming Machine Profits, equalling around $128m.

The decrease in venues and machines reflects an ongoing trend around numbers of venues and machines, which have fallen consistently since 2015.

Some of this decrease may be attributable to 2020’s COVID 19 restrictions said Chris Thornborough.

DIA releases quarterly statistics in its role of regulator for gambling. The Department collects statistics including the numbers of gaming machines, venues, and profits to provide accurate information about gambling.

Help is available if you or someone you know has a gambling problem. For free and confidential information and help you can call 0800 654 655 or visit The Ministry of Health funds and coordinates problem gambling services.


Media contact:

Te Tari Taiwhenua | Department of Internal Affairs

Media phone | +64 27 535 8639