Update: Higher Online Gambling Tax Demanded by Some Irish Politicians


Spreading the tax net to e-gaming operators is not enough for some Labour politicians

It seems that for some Labour Party politicians in Ireland extending the tax net to online gambling operators was not enough, so they have proposed further increase of the rate from 1 percent to 1.5 percent, Irish Press Association reports.

The idea reportedly originated from the Labour Party Leader Eamon Gilmore who plans to allocate the additional income to the Irish Horse and Greyhound Fund, thus ensuring financial support for the racing industry and relieving the government of further racing subsidies.

The operators surely do not approve of the proposal, however for the Labour Party the latest extension of the tax net is yet another opportunity to give the industry more money to maintain higher horse racing prizes comparing to other European countries.

In parallel, the Italian horseracing industry is also under pressure, according to the Racing Post recent reports.

The worrying statistics shows the decreasing trend of the sports betting turnover in Italy, comparing Euro1.7 billion from 2010 to Euro1.98 billion earned 2009, which is a drop of 12.7 percent. Moreover, such a development requires even more attention as it is opposite to the growing tendencies observed in other gambling sectors in Italy.

Forecast for 2011 is not bright as the analysts expect further decline judging by the January figures which are 17 percent lower comparing to the same period 2010.

The Italian racing industry is hoping to recover with the pledged Government injection of Euro150 million, but according to the experts, that is only a short-term solution. The crisis is being assessed jointly by the Government and UNIRE, the supervisory body for the industry, in order to improve current situation.

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