UK and U.S Gaming Progress

US and UK Internet Gambling Progress
The British government aims to tax foreign based operators

The last few weeks internet gambling has enjoyed a lot of coverage in the United States and the United Kingdom.

The British government aims to tax foreign based sites. While in the US many states and representative bodies are trying to foster an environment that encourages regulated internet gambling.

Ralph Topping, the chief executive of William Hill aired his concerns pertaining to the British government’s planned taxation policy. Topping said that the UK government is “stepping on a minefield”. The changes include foreign based sites must obtain a secondary license and pay tax if they want to do business in the UK. Topping said this procedure does not nurture a free gambling market.

He continued in the same vein, “If politicians act holistically, people might think that was a reasonable approach, but if they salami slice things, they’re in danger of making huge mistakes and getting into legal territory they wouldn’t enjoy.” In order to avoid the high tax rate William Hill decided to relocate its internet gambling operations to Gibraltar two years ago, the UK is fast becoming an uncompetitive market.

In Europe Gibraltar is presently the hub for internet gambling activity and William Hill has no immediate plans to return to the UK. Topping stated instead of imposing a decent tax rate for foreign internet casinos, the UK government must match the tax rate levels of other jurisdictions.

The Associated Press news agency in the US reports that the Washington DC council placed internet gambling legislation in the back burner yet again. The council hearing states that the public’s opinion must be taken into account before internet gambling can be legalized. Washington DC residents will not to have these presentations in summer causing the entire process to be delayed. Presentations will now take place from mid-September running into October.

Interestingly the American Gaming Association (AGA) just spent $641,621.09 lobbying the federal government in Q2 of 2011 on matters pertaining to internet gambling. The Associated Press news agency reported that the amount is more than what the AGA had spent in Q1 of 2011 and significantly more than what it spent in Q2 of 2010. The question is will this expenditure deliver the goods? Only time will tell.



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