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Lithuania Increases Gambling Tax by 2%

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Lithuanian Parliament Approves Increase in Gambling Tax

Significant changes are coming to Lithuania’s gambling industry!

The Lithuanian parliament has approved a 2% increase in gambling tax, impacting operators across the sector.

Learn how this new tax will generate additional revenue and support media affected by the gambling ad ban.

Stay informed about the latest legislative changes and their implications for the gambling market in Lithuania.

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Lithuanian Parliament Approves Increase in Gambling Tax

In a pivotal move, the Lithuanian parliament has voted to increase the tax on gambling operators by 2 percentage points, effective from 2025. This decision, introduced through amendments to the Law on Lottery and Gambling Tax, garnered substantial support, with 72 votes in favor and only nine abstentions.

The tax hike will raise the income tax levied on slots, table games, bingo, betting, and online gambling from 20% to 22%. According to Finance Minister Gintarė Skaistė, this change is not expected to significantly impact the sector’s competitiveness. However, it is projected to generate an additional €4.4 million annually for the state budget. A portion of these funds will be allocated to public education on gambling harm and to compensate media outlets for the revenue lost due to the ban on gambling advertising in Lithuania.

Lithuania’s Gaming Control Authority reports that 12 companies are currently licensed to offer gambling services in the country. In 2023, gross gambling revenue reached €222.2 million, reflecting a 13.5% increase from the previous year and more than double the revenue in 2020, which stood at €103 million.

This tax increase is part of a broader legislative effort to reform Lithuania’s gambling industry. The Lithuanian parliament, the Seimas, began considering amendments to the gambling legislation in mid-March. Among these proposed changes is a comprehensive ban on gambling advertisements, including sponsorship deals, set to take effect on January 1, 2025.

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Impact on the Gambling Sector

The increase in gambling tax marks a significant shift for gambling operators in Lithuania. While the tax hike itself is relatively modest, the additional financial burden comes at a time when the industry is already grappling with other regulatory changes. The forthcoming ban on gambling advertising will further challenge operators by limiting their ability to promote their services and attract new customers.

Finance Minister Skaistė emphasized that the additional revenue from the tax increase would support vital public initiatives. These initiatives include campaigns to educate the public about the risks of gambling, aiming to mitigate gambling-related harm. Moreover, compensating media for the lost advertising revenue is a critical step in maintaining a balanced media landscape, particularly in light of the advertising ban.

A Growing Gambling Market

Despite these regulatory changes, Lithuania’s gambling market has demonstrated robust growth. The increase in gross gambling revenue over the past few years indicates a healthy demand for gambling services. The tax hike is unlikely to deter this growth, especially if operators continue to innovate and adapt to the new regulatory environment.

The Gaming Control Authority’s data highlights the sector’s expansion, with a significant rise in revenue and an increasing number of licensed operators. This growth trajectory suggests that the market can absorb the tax increase without compromising its overall health.

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Looking Ahead

As Lithuania moves forward with these legislative changes, the gambling industry will need to adapt. Operators will have to navigate the challenges posed by the advertising ban while managing the increased tax burden. However, these changes also present opportunities. By investing in responsible gambling initiatives and engaging with the community, operators can build a more sustainable and socially responsible industry.

In conclusion, the Lithuanian parliament’s decision to increase the gambling tax is a strategic move to bolster public funds and support the media sector. While the industry faces challenges, the underlying growth and adaptability of the market suggest that it can thrive under the new regulatory framework. As these changes unfold, stakeholders must remain vigilant and proactive to ensure the continued success and integrity of Lithuania’s gambling industry.

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Jerome, a valuable addition to the Gamingo.News team, brings with him extensive journalistic experience in the iGaming sector. His interest in the industry was sparked during his college years when he participated in local poker tournaments, eventually leading to his exposure to the burgeoning world of online poker and casino rooms. Jerome now utilizes his accumulated knowledge to fuel his passion for journalism, providing the team with the latest online scoops.

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