Despite the government’s crackdown on gambling and the increase in rules and regulations, it seems that online gambling is still keeping someone happy, the UK Taxman.
Indeed, this week, The HMRC released its UK Betting and Gaming Statistics. And, it sure made for some interesting reading. Firstly, they confirmed that they have made more money this year, but only just. In fact, they reported that in the six months up until Sept 30 this year, they made around £1.463 Billion. However, whilst this is an increase, it is up just 0.5% on last year.
Whilst the overall haul is very similar, the money is coming from very different places this year. Firstly, the industry suffered a hit when they reduced the maximum stake on Fixed Online Betting Terminals to £2 per spin. In essence, this resulted in a drop in the Machine Gaming Duty (MGD). As a result, they took £270.3 Million. However, this was down 24.2% on last year.
So, in order to compensate for this, they increased the Remote Gaming Duty (Online Casino tax) from 15% to 21%. As a result, this sector brought in £332.4 Million from April to September. This is an increase of 26% from the same period last year.
All and all, the Remote Gaming Duty from online casinos contributed 22.7% of the total monies. This is up from 18.1% last year.
Looking at the first half of the year, the online casino tax rose £68.5 Million in comparison to the £86.7 drop in MGD. However, because a very busy sports calendar, there has been an increase in the last 3 months of the Remote Gaming Duty of a massive 47.4%. So, this more than makes up for the 33.3% drop in the MGD revenue.
It’s all swings and roundabouts in the world of gambling tax, but one thing’s for sure. They keep the taxman’s purse full to overflowing.