The Department of Internal Affairs

Te Tari Taiwhenua | Department of Internal Affairs

Building a safe, prosperous and respected nation


Further Decline in Gaming Machines


The number of gaming machines in pubs and clubs has declined by almost 18 per cent since peaking in June 2003, according to the latest quarterly gambling licensing statistics released by the Department of Internal Affairs. The number of licensed gambling operators and gaming machine venues are also continuing to drop.

Since June 2003 the number of venues has declined by 20 per cent and in the year to June 2006 gaming machines and venues recorded a five per cent drop.

Licensed gambling operations in pubs and clubs
Date Licence holders Venues Gaming Machines
30 June 2006 496 1701 20,739
31 March 2006 513 1721 21,026
31 December 2005 526 1747 21,343
30 September 2005 535 1770 21,684
30 June 2005 553 1801 21,846
31 March 2005 568 1838 22,159
31 December 2004 584 1850 22,231
31 December 2003 672 2031 22,734
30 June 2003 699 2122 25,221
1.Machine numbers peaked in the quarter before the Gambling Act was passed.

Internal Affairs Department Director of Gambling Compliance, Mike Hill, says the Gambling Act 2003 introduced a much stricter licensing regime and reduced limits on the numbers of machines allowed in venues. In general, venues licensed at 17 October 2001 can have up to 18 machines, while others can have up to nine. The Act also gave communities a say, through their local authorities, which can make policies preventing or limiting new venues and controlling the expansion of existing venues. Machine numbers peaked in June 2003 before the Gambling Act was passed.

The biggest reductions in the last quarter were in Auckland and Christchurch cities with 93 and 92 fewer machines respectively. Auckland lost two venues and Christchurch eight.

Further information, including numbers of venues and machines by territorial authority and the changes in these numbers, is available from the Department’s website:

Media contact:

Trevor Henry, communications adviser, ph 04 495 7211, cell 0275 843 679