British Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne has announced that gambling operators licensed in the UK will be required to pay tax on ‘free bet’ offers for online casino and bingo games.
Unveiled on 16th March in the UK government’s latest budget proposal, the requirement will come into effect from 1st August 2017
Should the motion be approved, operators will be required to pay 15% general betting duty on all free or discounted online bets.
Online casino and bingo free bet offers were excluded from the 15% point-of-consumption tax on online gambling revenue that was introduced in the UK in 2014.
However, despite the potential introduction of the new requirement, Osbourne opted not make any changes to regulations and tax laws surrounding the much-criticised fixed-odds betting terminals (FOBTs).
The machines have come under fire from various sectors in the UK due to their alleged addictive nature, with punters able to place a maximum stake of £100 (€127/$143).
The government is yet to budge on its potion on FOBTs, resisting calls to cut the maximum stake to just £2.