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Sweden contemplates gambling tax hike from 18% to 22% in 2024

Sweden is contemplating a tax rate increase on gambling from 18% to 22% of gaming revenue (GGR), scheduled to take effect on July 1, 2024. This adjustment is anticipated to yield SEK 540 million (approximately USD54 million) in additional tax revenue.

The government justifies this decision by pointing to the stability of the gambling market since its re-regulation in 2019 and the increased gambling activity resulting from measures taken against unlicensed online operators. However, the proposed tax hike faces staunch opposition from the Online Gaming Industry Association (BOS).

BOS Secretary General Gustaf Hoffstedt has criticized the government for what he perceives as a lack of understanding regarding the market and its vulnerabilities. According to BOS’s research, Sweden’s channelization rate is at a concerning low of 77%, with certain sectors like casinos as low as 72%, and these figures are on a declining trend.

Hoffstedt cautions that implementing this proposed tax increase might result in channelization figures reverting to those seen prior to the market’s re-regulation in 2019 and urges the government to reconsider. The government counters this by arguing that increasing taxes is necessary to strengthen their finances without unduly burdening companies and taxpayers.

The proposal remains a topic of debate among industry stakeholders and policymakers, who are actively discussing its implications for Sweden’s gambling sector.

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