Australians enjoy horseracing, and placing wagers on their favorite horses. Last month, it was announced that the horse racing industry was where most people gamble. In light of recent tax events, it has become harder for sports bookies to operate, but one state will find the issue lessened.
Victoria’s government introduced a new tax, which seems a bit “soft” compared to other locations. Many Australian licensed betting platforms have found an option in Victoria to operate online, without high taxes. The online gambling point-of-consumption tax is very high in many parts of Australia, but Victoria seems to want the companies to remain open and thus gain tax income. It does not mean everything is friendly in Victoria, just that certain things are remaining more affordable for bookies.
The new tax laws may not allow bonus bets; however, the more affordable tax will make it possible for bookies to continue taking wagers.
What It Means
Victoria is one of two biggest areas in Australia, which has decided to make the betting tax a bit easier to handle for online bookmakers. Tim Pallas, the Victoria State Treasurer, spoke Monday, May 14, 2018, about the tax laws and online bookies. Pallas said there would be an 8 percent point-of-consumption tax, which is lower than the 15 percent bookies face in South and Western Australian states.
Victoria will impose the tax in January 2019. The new tax police still have to go through the state parliament and gain support. Pallas believes the government will approve the bill particularly when they see the tax revenue. In USD it is going to be a bit over $22 million.
Pallas stated they are taking steps to ensure online betting companies will pay the tax. He also stated they had several consultations with the industry and stakeholders before coming to the eight percent tax. Anti-gambling groups would rather see 15 percent tax on online betting locations. They want the tax to go to social welfare and hospitals.
Online bookies did not appreciate the proposal of 15 percent tax. The companies stated jobs would be at risk with such a high tax rate. Online betting firms are not making the income to support such a tax hike, according to the industry members. Tabcorp, a local gambling operator, wants a national rate for all online firms. Tabcorp has the most to lose with online betting locations since it is direct competition.
Victoria thinks some online gambling locations will attempt to get licensed in Victoria since it will have a fairer tax rate.