The European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA) has submitted a formal state aid complaint to the European Commission in response to the German parliament’s proposal to set a 5.3 per cent tax on online poker and slots stakes in the city.
The lobbying group argues that this proposed tax would breach EU state aid rules, by applying only to online operators, and lead to online poker and slots stakes in Germany being taxed at rates four to five times higher than land-based gambling establishments.
The organisation had previously warned that the proposed online tax would result in substantial and unfair tax advantage to Germany’s land-based gambling establishment, a claim which Malta’s iGaming Association iGen backed.
The EGBA claims that if the tax measure is approved, it could unfairly add €741 million in aid to land-based casinos.
“We have previously made our concerns about the tax proposal known to the German authorities but to no avail and they will now need to justify the measure under EU law”, commented Maarten Haijer, EGBA Secretary General.
iGEN has previously warned that the “punitive” tax rate on online poker and slots stakes would be to “the detriment of online operators which are disproportionately based in jurisdictions such as Malta”.
The European Commission has previously (in 2011) determined that differentiated tax treatment between online and land-based casinos qualifies as state aid under EU law.
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