Germany to justify online gambling tax charge

Germany’s federal council Bundesrat may delay its vote on integrating a 5.3% tax charge on player stakes on online slots and poker verticals.

The tax charge

The European Commission has intervened to halt the controversial 5.3% tax charge. It is an outstanding issue for Germany’s state government Bundesländer. The deadline is June 7. The Fourth Interstate Treaty on Gambling is to be passed into law on July 1.

An EC state aid compliant

German online gambling trade associations for sports betting DSWV and online casino DOCV have submitted an EC state aid compliant. This follows a compliant from the European Betting and Gaming Association. It claims the Bundesrat had applied a differentiated tax treatment for slots and poker. It also states that this favoured Germany’s state-owned casinos.

The European Commission will force the Bundesrat to justify its decision. It must also explain how it differs from a state aid action. The European Union forbids this.

A delay to Germany’s new online gambling regime

This could delay the final vote by up to a year. Trade associations believe this could allow licensed stakeholders to push for a fair solution when it comes to taxing online casino and poker verticals.

The European Commission had previously warned the Bundesrat about the restrictive measures contained within the Treaty during the first stages of its development. German lawmakers ignored this advice and decided to enforce a €1,000 (£861) monthly deposit limit and €1 (£0.86) stake limit on slots.

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