A proposed tax on internet gambling could generate nearly €50 million for the country in its first year.
A study by a private firm estimates that the bill, which will be read before the parliament's summer recess, would be paid by 77% of the online operators that reach Irish punters. Some of the large gambling firms that would be expected to pay the 1% tax on turnover include Ladbrokes, Boyle Sports, Paddy Power, and William Hill. A 15% tax on gross profits has been proposed for betting exchanges like Betfair and Betdaq.
Irish newspaper the Irish Examiner reported on the tax, saying: "Some of the larger mainstream operators have welcomed the tax initiative, but are concerned about the government’s ability to create a level playing field and succeed in taxing all companies who generate revenue from Irish customers via their online offerings."
Online betting firm Ladbrokes has voiced support for a standard 7.5% tax rate on gross profits for both bookmakers and betting exchanges.
Industry analysts estimate that the 1% tax on turnover could cost gambling firms big time. Paddy Power could be effected by as much as €7 million with the 1% turnover tax. A 15% gross profit tax could cost Betfair about £1.5 million per year.