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UK Free Bet Tax to Hit Online Casinos and Bingo in 2017

Tom Lasten 20 April 2016 - 08:25:54

Following the UK chancellor George Osborne’s budget proposal last Wednesday all the online casinos and bingo sites that are licensed in the UK will have a 15% general betting duty levied against them. This new tax will come into effect on August 17th 2017 and is designed to bring casino and bingo operators more in line with the level of taxation already aimed at sports betting.

Online Casinos and Bingo targeted, Bookmakers avoid tax

Since 2014 online casinos and bingo sites have already had to pay a 15% tax due to new gaming regulations which came into effect, with residents betting from inside the UK the ones affected.

“the entire UK gambling industry had swollen to an astonishing £7.1 billion in 2015”

The bookies however seem to have gotten off scot free, while they expected a big change to the tax on automated fixed odds betting. Fixed odds betting terminals have caused quite an uproar in the United Kingdom of late, many gamblers and industry figures calling for a reduction in betting limits on these types of machines. Currently these limits can be as high as £100 on certain machines.

UK Gambling Industry shows growth despite heavier taxation

Operators were also surprised to see that no advertising restrictions were announced as part of the proposal, with Ladbrokes shares rising more than 7% from that news alone and William Hill following suit, albeit by a slightly (only slightly) more modest 4.3%

This news should come as no surprise to some gambling pundits out there, not all operators are feeling the burn just yet and figures recently released from last year showed the entire UK gambling industry had swollen to an astonishing £7.1 billion in 2015.

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