- Swedish government wants to raise the gambling tax rate in 2024
- Spelinspektionen has positioned itself as neutral regarding proposed gambling tax hike
- Branschföreningen för Onlinespel cautions tax increase could hurt licensed operators
Sweden re-regulated its online gambling industry in 2019 and went with an 18 percent gambling tax rate on licensed operators.
Since then, the online gambling industry has done very well in Sweden with gross gaming revenues continuing to grow each quarter.
Riksdag, which is the highest decision making body in Sweden has proposed to raise gambling taxes from 18 percent to 22 percent in order to bring in more tax revenues for the Swedish government.
Spelinspektionen Takes Neutral Position On Tax Hike
Spelinspektionen which is the gambling regulator in Sweden has come out and stated that it has no specific opinion on the proposed gambling tax hike by Riksdag. Spelinspektionen has maintained a neutral position on the proposed tax increase which could be implemented by July 1, 2024 should the proposal get approval.
The government of Sweden expects the proposed tax increase to generate a further €45 million in revenues. This tax increase proposal is not connected in any way to the current review being undertaken by the Swedish government regarding gambling standards, regulations and player protection rights.
The Swedish government decided to move forward with a proposal to increase the gambling tax rate as the government believed that the online gambling market has finally stabilised and now established operators will be in a better position to pay a higher tax rate.
Spelinspektionen pointed out that an increased tax rate could have an impact on the channelling rate which the government estimates to be at 90 percent.
BOS Cautions Against Proposed Tax Increase
While Spelinspektionen is taking a neutral stand against the proposed tax increase, Branschföreningen för Onlinespel (BOS) which is the Swedish Trade Association for Online Gambling has opposed the proposed tax hike stating that the government has made the proposal based on certain miscalculations.
BOS does not agree with the 90 percent channelling rate that the government has accepted and states that based on its individual reviews the channelling rate is a lot lower and stands at around 77 percent with some online casinos dropping to 72 percent.
BOS says the government has not taken into account the current and future state of the market when proposing its tax increase.
Spelinspektionen in its latest land based and online gambling report (Swedish) said that gross gaming revenues from licensed operators had dropped by 1 percent.