Will Greece Keep its Online Gambling Tax at 35 Percent?
Anyone who is still thinking that Greek online gambling operators will be able to dodge a sky high 35 percent tax on their revenue is likely in for a big disappointment. Earlier this week, a US consultant contracted by the Greek government to study the matter issued a report recommending that the controversial tax plan be implemented as soon as possible.
The report, which was commissioned by the Greek government and undertaken by the consulting group Grant Thornton, is a big blow for operators who were hoping that the long-promised Greek gaming reform effort would shake out in their favor. It’s generally agreed in the online gambling industry that this tax structure would also lessen interest in the other big aspect of the Grant Thornton report, a proposed new gaming license structure.
Under the proposed new licensing scheme operators could get either a Type A license, which would just cover sportsbooks; or they could get a Type B license, which would be for casino operators.
As for how many licenses the government should actually issue, the consultants wouldn’t say exactly. What they were willing to say is that Greece should not impose an arbitrary limit on the number of licenses it issues. Also, they suggested that the licensing fee be set at €500,000 with annual maintenance fees of €50,000. Those licenses would be good for a seven year period and licensees would be required to maintain a server presence in Greece during that time.
Of course the big question now is whether or not there would be much in interest from operators in the Greek market, what with the 35 percent tax and all.