Ireland targets offshore operators with new online betting tax

Ireland targets offshore operators with new online betting tax

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

The Republic of Ireland is to introduce a new online betting tax could generate up to an additional €25m (€31.5m) per year for the country.  

The new law will require foreign bookmakers that offer remote services to consumers in the country to obtain a national licence, regardless of whether they have a physical presence in Ireland.

These operators will also be liable to pay tax on betting transactions with consumers in the country.

Irish Minister for Finance Michael Noonan first attempted to introduce the new tax regime upon assuming his official position over three years ago as part of a move to generate more funds for the government.

Under existing law, foreign-based operators benefited from a relatively tax-free regime, which meant that Ireland missed out on millions of euros worth of tax.

Noonan said that the additional funds collected under the new regime will partly be used to support capital and other investment in Ireland’s horse and greyhound racing industries.

“In recognition of the importance of the Irish bloodstock industry to the rural economy and the anticipated yield of €25m per annum from betting duty, the government will be providing an additional €6m per year for three years to the fund for horse and greyhound racing,” Noonan told the Examiner newspaper.

“The government is also allocating additional capital of €5m to Horse Racing Ireland in 2015 to leverage investment in race courses.”

Although the country is likely to receive a backlash from foreign-based operators, Irish bookmaker Paddy Power has voiced its support for the new regime, saying it will help create a more even national market. 

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