Will state take over the bookmaker’s informal sector?

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Betting operators market in Poland is estimated at 5 billion dollars. Companies functioning legally on it pay 12% sales tax.

If the grey part of this sector would be taxed, the country could get 300-400 billions zł annually- writes Konrad Łabudek, lawyer of Fortuna Online company.

Bookmaker’s market in Poland is regulated by Act on Games and Mutual Wagering, which is in force from the beginning of 2010. One year later the act was amended and online bets, after consulting with Ministry of Finance, were allowed. On the Polish market there are four legal bookmaker companies- Fortuna, STS, Totolotek and Milenium. The market is dominated by unlicensed offshore operators, who have jointly 91% of shares on the whole market- and they are not taxed. In 2013 in Poland the online gambling and gaming market gained over 4,9 billion zł.

Legal companies pay 12 percent.

According to the act, legal operators pay 12% of sales tax, one of the highest in the whole EU. Additionally they can’t advertise their services and they have limited sponsoring possibilities. Unfortunately the act still doesn’t regulate the case of the “grey sector”- unlicensed operators, and unfortunately the money betted offshore omit the budget of Republic of Poland. Report published by  The Supreme Chamber of Control points out, that regulations of Act on Games and Mutual Wagering allow enforcing the law only for the subjects acting within Poland territory.

As a result the regulations further avoiding the responsibility by the companies that don’t pay taxes, but offer their services to the Polish consumers without the permission from Ministry of Finance. That conjuncture, along with possible solutions of the problem, is concluded in the report presented few months ago by Roland Berger company.

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