Irish Online Gambling Will Cost Operators More

Published Friday, March 06, 2015 -
Irish Online Gambling Will Cost Operators More

Ireland has a thriving online gambling industry which may be under some pressure after the new laws regarding the business come into effect in that jurisdiction. The Betting (Amendment) Bill 2013 that has been debated for some time has been approved and is being set to the president of Ireland Michael Higgins for the final signing. The delay in the legislation was long and tedious but Irish Finance Minister Michael Noonan has confirmed it is a done deal which is expected to return an additional €25 million ($27.5 million) each year to the coffers in the Irish jurisdiction.

Closing the loop for foreign-based operators who have benefitted, the new levy on online transactions will see Ireland getting a share of the revenue they have been losing with the previous almost tax free situation available to offshore suppliers of online gambling products. All operators offering services in Ireland will be required to obtain an online gambling operator’s licence from the Irish authorities and pay tax on transactions with Irish gamblers. Ireland first announced the plan to require internet betting service providers to be licensed and pay taxes back in 2011, proposing that the 1 percent tax on bets placed in shops be extended to wagers made online or on the phone.

Online gambling companies such as Paddy Power, Ladbrokes and William Hill are also facing higher tax rates in the U.K. after legislation was recently passed there. Paddy Power, earns more than three quarters of its profit online and has remarked that the tax would have cost it 8 million euro last year. Paddy Power saw profits of 167 million euro before tax in 2014.

Paddy Power’s Chief Financial Officer Cormac McCarthy commented recently to the press, "Where Ireland and the UK are at right now, it seems to have hit a balance. The big increases we think are set for a while,"


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