LATVIA

Ministry of Finance: Latvia to lose millions if gambling is banned

Latvian Ministry of Finance has analyzed the situation if gambling halls outside four or five star hotels are closed not only in Riga, but throughout Latvia. According to the calculations of the Ministry, in this case, the country’s budget will lose 36.6 million euros.

Under the amount of 36.6 million euros, the Ministry of Finance implies an uncollected tax on gambling. Part of this tax, namely 27.45 million euros could be received by the state budget, the other 9.15 million euros could enrich local governments’ budgets, the ministry said.

License payments will also decrease. In 2018, 320 gambling halls paid for licenses 4,500 euros each. These revenues create a negative fiscal impact of an additional 1.44 million euros.

The Ministry of Finance called for other taxes to be taken into account. For example, 4830 people worked in all licensed gambling establishments in 2018. However, some employees work with online gambling, so the shut down of gambling halls will not have a direct effect on these people.

Gambling operators in 2018 paid 22.9 million euros taxes on labor. The tax on corporate profits amounted to 5.8 million euros, VAT – 5.5 million euros. All these taxes were paid to the state budget.

It is worth mentioning, that the Riga City Council decided to close all gambling halls in the city, except for those located in four- and five-star hotels.

Source: lsm.lv

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