RGA calls for change over Polish sports betting tax regime

22 September 2016

The Remote Gambling Association (RGA) has called on the Polish government to amend its online sports betting tax, saying current regulations are holding back market development in the country.

Poland currently operates under a regime based on turnover, but the RGA said that operators should instead be taxed on gross profit.

In a statement, the RGA said the 12% turnover tax on sports betting has “failed to build an attractive regime”, which has in turn discouraged operators from applying for licences in Poland, thus forcing punters to look outside of the country and breach blocking measures to place bets.

Clive Hawkswood, chief executive of the RGA, added: “Unfortunately, we have already observed since 2011 the effect of a turnover tax on the ability of Poland’s online gambling regime to attract European operators.

“We have advised the Polish authorities that their fiscal framework is not workable. Until it is changed, few operators will take up licences in Poland.

“This will continue to stifle competition, value and choice for consumers; it would be a great shame if Poland did not seize the opportunity created by the new Bill to move towards a more viable regulatory option.”

The RGA appointed economic consultants Roland Berger to conduct a study of the Polish market, with the report suggesting that a regime based on a gross profit tax, “would contribute to a better achievement of the government’s goals as compared to the current policies”.

Hawkswood added: “A suitable gross profits tax model would enable the Polish government to attract large, reputable companies into Poland and that would provide a market for the industry, excellent products and value for the consumers, and revenue for the state and regions.

“It would be hugely disappointing for all stakeholders if a modern and forward thinking regulatory regime was fatally undermined by an unworkable tax regime.”

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