EGBA claims Germany’s casino tax violates European law

The European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA) has spoken out against Germany’s proposed online casino turnover tax. They claim that it is in violation of EU laws, and will push players to turn to unlicensed operators instead of trusted ones.

Germany has now approved online gambling in all 16 states. The Bundesrat has proposed a rate of tax to the Bundestag, but this is just a proposal and still needs to be finalised. Their proposed turnover tax rate for online casinos is 5.3%, and it would apply to both poker and slots sites.

The EGBA has described this as “punitive”, and claims that it would only push players to look for sites elsewhere, and this means unregulated and potentially dangerous sites. What’s more, this proposal could be in violation of European law as it could offer an advantage to land-based casinos over online ones.

In a statement, the association said: “Players outside of the regulated market would be deprived of the protection of German consumer laws, rendering the proposed tax incompatible with the key objective of the country’s new online gambling regulation.

“The proposed tax measure is punitive and would, in Bavaria for example, result in online poker and slots being taxed at rates four to five times higher than their retail equivalent land-based casinos and 15 times higher than slots in land-based amusement arcades.”

As Germany begins to allow online gambling on many sites, this question of taxation is one area that should be observed closely.

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