"Special" Online Casino Tax

Published February 8, 2009

The South African government authorities have stepped in with a new move that will tax the gross gambling revenue of online casino operations.

Someone once said there are two certainties in life - death and taxes. Following the rapid development of the South African online casino industry, and its associated rise in tourism and other industries, the government taxation machine has moved into gear. Government is currently pushing parliamentary legislation to control, monitor, and regulate this potential cash cow.

The other side of the coin
While direct taxation can sometimes have the effect of pushing gambling activity underground, authorities are following the clearly delineated model adopted by many advanced online gambling nations.

These countries have supported direct taxation as a means of recycling profits for the general good of players and casino operators alike. Additional tax income will be assigned to protecting those vulnerable sectors of society such as under age gamblers, who are often targeted by countries where gambling activity is unregulated.

The gambling tax plan
The plan itself, known as the Interactive Gaming Tax Bill, involves taxing the gross gambling revenue of Internet casino companies. This "special tax," as the authorities are calling it, is part of the National Gambling Amendment Bill, which was passed by parliament in May of 2008. The government's stated objective is the protection of consumers and young people.

A final comment opportunity before the bill is passed will take place on March 1, 2009, after which it is projected that the bill will be passed into law.

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