Gordon Brown to lure gambling firms to UK

Gordon Brown, Chancellor of the Exchequer, is reportedly set to announce plans in next month’s budget to entice offshore gambling firms to be regulated and licenced in the UK in return for a tax.

The new tax, which will be called the Remote Gaming Duty, would allow gambling companies to be licenced in the UK but still be based overseas and could be as little as two or three per cent. The nature of the tax would also allow these companies to avoid paying British Value Added Tax (VAT), the very reason they are based abroad in places such as Gibraltar in the first place.

An exact figure for the new Remote Gaming Duty is yet to be decided but the government are aware that anything too high will deter companies from paying a tax they do not necessarily need to pay, even if they do want the kudos of being a UK licenced company.

The new tax will be introduced come the implementation of the new Gambling Bill 2005.

However, it is unlikely that remote gambling companies would relocate to the UK completely if they had to pay a tax on gross wins, which could be as high as 40 per cent.

The UK government’s stance on online gambling is a complete mirror image to that of the US, whose tough clampdown last year on online casinos and online poker caused panic within the industry and wiped $6.5 billion off the value of the market.

The treasury have long been eager to get their hands on the tax from online gambling companies. With the introduction of the Remote Gaming Duty they could receive as much as £3 million a year from each company that decides they want to be licenced and regulated in the UK.

Editor, Jackpot.co.uk - 2007-02-23 10:57:56

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